HTA launches political engagement drive and new resources for members

The Horticultural Trades Association (HTA) is building on its expanded political engagement programme with a new push to reach out to key new ministers to showcase and engage on issues critical to its members.

From borders and trade to environmental regulation, the sector is directly impacted by or directly impacts a range of policy areas.

The HTA has written to all key ministers for environmental horticulture to seek early engagement and their support.

Many HTA members from across the UK have been writing to and hosting visits of their local constituency MPs and parliamentary candidates in recent months. This outreach has proved fruitful in fostering new relationships, local media coverage, and action on specific issues, such as the cross-border movement of plants. The HTA has refreshed its member resources following the election to support this outreach, including template letters, to help make it as easy as possible for busy businesses to have that engagement with their newly or re-elected MPs.

Fran Barnes, HTA Chief Executive, commented: “The HTA and its members have met with many parliamentarians in recent months. Following the general election, this is an important time to renew existing relationships as well as build new ones. Reaching out to new ministers and encouraging our members to host visits of their local MPs and any political party helps to firmly establish a strong understanding of the importance of our sector and its value to the UK.

“We set our key policy ambitions in our environmental horticulture manifesto published earlier this year; whilst all are still relevant, some will take months or years to realise. What we can do today, and seek to support our members to do, is to write to local MPs and welcome them into their businesses and the industry at an early stage and build those all-important political relationships at a local as well as national level. Our mission is to support our members to flourish, and we, in turn, as a sector, can help government and policymakers achieve key goals, whether green growth or environmental, health and economic ambitions.”

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