The NFU’s relationship with the government is also causing controversy, after the department for environment, food and rural affairs (Defra) refused to disclose information on the cull on the grounds that communications with the NFU constituted “internal communications”. The Information Commissioner has ruled against Defra’s refusal, but the department is appealing the decision and on Thursday, Morgan, who acts for the Badger Trust, filed new legal documents challenging Defra’s appeal.
“If Defra were to succeed in their use of the ‘internal communications’ exemption, this would be a very worrying development for democratic decision-making,” said Morgan, adding that it would set a precedent of secrecy for any lobbyists’ communication with government. “The Badger Trust is going above and beyond the call of duty and taking on the wider case on behalf of all those organisations who campaign for transparency in decision-making.”
The NFU is an industry pressure group. It is a shame DEFRA doesn’t support consumers in the same way.