Lord Deben ‘incredibly proud’ after appointment as honorary Suffolk Show president

LORD Deben, the former Suffolk Coastal MP John Gummer said he was “incredibly proud” after he was voted honorary Suffolk Show president at the Suffolk Agricultural Association (SAA) AGM this week.

He praised retiring president Derek Scott, and said it would be “extremely difficult” to follow him. It was “very hard to think of anybody more charming or kinder”, he added.

“To me, this is a very exciting moment,” he said.

SAA chairman Stephen Fletcher told members that despite a hostile economic climate, farming was having “a better time” than some industries, although it was not immune from the effects.

Agriculture had spent decades in the doldrums before now, he said. He quoted from billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates in saying it was “shocking, not the mention short-sighted and dangerous, how little money is spent on agricultural research”.

More food would need to be produced to feed a growing world population, and organisations like the SAA had a “very meaningful” role to play in this new world, he said.