NO matter where we live, whether in a town, a village, a city, or a rural community, farming matters.

Of course, to those who live in rural areas, it is more obvious why farming matters – because it is a livelihood, a way of life, and slogging away long hours and days to produce food for the nation is everything that many in our rural communities know.

But whether we live in the city, the countryside or somewhere in between, we all depend on the hard work, generational knowledge and commitment to provide us with great quality produce to some of the highest standards anywhere in the world, crucially at a price that people can afford.

Sadly, it is easy to take this for granted and assume that high quality food just lands on our supermarket shelves and will continue to do so forevermore.

Even with the introduction of new technologies to help boost productivity and carry out certain tasks on our farms, we will always need our farmers.

For Government's part, we have made huge strides forward in supporting our farmers in recent years and we are continuing to seize the opportunities of leaving the European Union and the Common Agricultural Policy.

While the Common Agricultural Policy worked for some, for too many small and medium sized farms here in the UK – those who are the backbone of our food output – the Common Agricultural Policy put them at a disadvantage.

Earlier this week, the Government reaffirmed its commitment to deliver on its plan to support profitable farming businesses, improve food security and protect the British agriculture sector for generations to come.

The Prime Minister and the Environment Secretary attended the National Farmers Union Conference in Birmingham to announce the largest ever grant offer for farmers in the coming financial year, expected to total £427 million. This should help farmers boost productivity and improve resilience across the sector which in turn should help stabilise food prices for residents here in Dudley South.

A key part of the Government’s support is to double investment in schemes that help increase productivity – strengthening schemes such as the Improving Farming Productivity grant, which provides support for farmers to invest in automation and robotics, as well as solar installations to build on-farm energy security.

The Prime Minister also announced a new annual UK-wide Food Security Index to capture and present the data needed to monitor levels of food security – something which I think is particularly sensible given the increased tensions and conflict around the world.

Another frustration many of us have is the millions of tonnes of food that are wasted each year because it doesn’t meet certain visual criteria set by supermarkets. To help tackle this, there will also be a £15 million fund to help tackle food waste by enabling farmers to redistribute surplus food that cannot be used commercially at the farm gate.

These measures will by no means solve all the challenges faced by our farmers, or totally shield the British consumer from the impact global events have on our prices here at home – but they are yet another step in the right direction, supporting both those who produce our food and every citizen in the country who relies on it.