A survey by OnePoll has shown that support for British food and farming has reached a record high as a result of farmers’ efforts to keep the nation fed throughout the coronavirus pandemic.

The Farmer Favourability Survey reveals that 75 per cent of people voiced a positive view of UK farming, which is the highest figure since OnePoll started carrying out the annual survey in 2012.

It also marks a 6 per cent point increase in public approval since June 2019, which comes on top of a further 5 per cent point increase between June 2018-19.

There are also fewer people claiming to have no opinion on farming, dropping from 25 per cent to 21 per cent over the past year. When the survey started in 2012, this figure was at 33 per cent.

The majority of respondents cited the importance of British farming’s work throughout lockdown as a reason for their increased positive view.

Other findings from the Farmer Favourability Survey include:

• 86 per cent agreed that British farms should grow as much food as they can to provide national food security

• 88 per cent of the public feel it is important that Britain has a productive farming industry – the highest figure for 3 years

• 89 per cent of the public feel farming is fairly or very important to the UK economy – a 4 per cent point increase since 2019

• 77 per cent of respondents agreed that farmers should continue to receive financial support post Brexit – a 4 per cent point increase since 2019 and a 9 per cent point increase since 2017

NFU Cymru president John Davies said: “Farmers have played a vital role in keeping the nation fed during the coronavirus pandemic and it is terrific that this poll shows that the public recognise the industry’s efforts at such a challenging time for the nation.

“It is clear that the Covid-19 crisis is not over and with a ‘no-deal’ Brexit at the end of the year becoming a very real prospect, farmers will be buoyed that the public hold the industry in such high regard and that consumers are placing an increasing value on healthy, sustainable British food.

“The findings of the Farmer Favourability Survey are the latest indicator that the public is throwing its support behind our industry. It was only last month that the NFU’s food standards petition passed one million signatures.

"Furthermore, nearly 80,000 people have written to their MP asking them to support the introduction of a Trade and Agriculture Commission, something that NFU and NFU Cymru lobbying has helped to achieve.”