The contribution of UK farm assurance schemes towards desirable environmental policy outcomes
This study sought to evaluate the content of a range of UK primary production assurance schemes and their potential to support selected desirable agri-environmental policy outcomes. The schemes reviewed included those that fall under the Assured Food Standards umbrella plus eligible UK equivalents and examples of retailer and supplementary schemes. The assessment was based on scheme documentation (2008/2009), associated published literature and historical comment. The analysis showed that assurance schemes, generally, do not meet all the desired policy outcomes but this should not necessarily be expected or sought. However, such schemes are ideally placed to help the industry respond to changing demands, by changing or raising the scheme standards.