The Prime Minister demonstrated her commitment to Northern Ireland’s farming industry in a visit to meet local farmers in Bangor today and to hear their views on what Brexit means to them.
She had a lunch of local Northern Ireland produce at Fairview Farm hosted by the Jackson family and representatives of the Ulster Farmers Union, where she shared her determination to secure a deal that would benefit the whole of the UK.
Her visit was part of a day-long tour across the United Kingdom to mark exactly one year from the UK’s historic exit from the European Union.
Prime Minister Theresa May said:
Northern Ireland and the farming industry are integral parts of the United Kingdom’s history, culture and, importantly, our future – which is why I’m here today to speak to farmers and hear their views.
My mission is to deliver a Brexit deal that strengthens the bonds between us and ensures our industries and nations prosper as we forge a new role for ourselves in the world.
Today, I want to hear from people in Northern Ireland about what our exit from the EU means to them. As there is no Executive in place in Northern Ireland, it is even more important that the views of people and businesses here continue to be heard. We remain absolutely committed to restoring a devolved government to Northern Ireland and will continue to work with the parties to achieve this.
I also want to reassure the people of Northern Ireland about my commitment to avoid a hard border and protect the Belfast Agreement. The border is used daily for travel and trade, but it also forms a hugely important part of British and Irish identities, rooted in generations of family history – and this is something that needs to be protected.
Agriculture is one of the most significant industries in Northern Ireland, employing around 48,000 people to work on over 25,000 farms, creating produce which is renowned in quality at home and abroad.
Fairview Farm is comprised of a 300 cow dairy unit and covers 132 acres of grassland.