Dear Combinable Crops and Sugarbeet Members,

I would like to share some key points and developments following our recent Sector Board meeting.  

I provided an update on the work we have done to engage and listen to members in recent months.  

I, together with other Board members, attended the Cereals event, meeting many growers over the two days and sharing the challenges that face us all.  These include the expected smaller harvest, import equivalence and specific concerns about the value Red Tractor offers its members.   

Practically, within the board, we reflected on the two decades that Red Tractor has provided this sector with a standard which has evolved to work for many markets. These include animal feed, premium milling and malting, oilseed crushing, breakfast cereal manufacturing and sugar as well as biofuels. This has incrementally pushed all UK combinable crops and sugar beet producers to a high common standard – a ‘one stop shop’ for farmers.    

A key part of the board was an update on the Entry Level Animal Feed Enterprise and the on-going liaison with key stakeholders to discuss this work. On that note, you may have seen the recent article in Farmers Weekly about Red Tractor’s work in this area.   

This is an important initiative that I believe will provide more options for Red Tractor crops members, particularly those focusing on feed grain production.  

During a workshop session, the board held an open forum to discuss the future of assurance and how to streamline the assessment process. The goal is to improve the audit efficiency for growers while maintaining the high standards of UK produce that the supply chain relies on.  

These are all reasons why we cannot stand still – and Red Tractor can be the vehicle for this change, delivering greater choice for assured growers.   

As always, we remain committed to serving the best interests of our members and the industry as a whole.  

I welcome your feedback and suggestions as we navigate our way through these developments.  

Kind regards,  

Kit Papworth,

Chair, Combinable Crops and Sugarbeet Board. 

Members of the Crops board:

Angela Bowden – Oilseed Crushers  

Jamie Burrows – Cereals grower

James Cox – Cereals grower

Matthew Culley – Cereals grower

Julian South – MAGB

Patrick Mitton – Pesticide Issues Consultant

Brin Hughes – BOBMA

Tom Wood – AIC/Grain Merchants

Peter Chandley – Weetabix

David Eudall – AHDB

Nick Morris – Sugar manufacturer

Alistair Gale – UK Flour Millers

Gill Barrow – AIC/Grain Merchants

Ed Dale – Sugar beet grower

Nigel Davies – TAC Chair

Harriette Roberts – BRC