Each week in the run up to polling day on June 7, The Grocer will be asking leading figures from across the food and drink industry to identify the one issue they think the newly elected government should tackle first Graham Melmoth, Chief executive Co-operative Group We would like to see a new, wider role for MAFF, charged not only with agricultural reform, ­ including a re-think of the CAP ­ but also no less a task than the regeneration and revitalisation of the economic life of the countryside. Second, we would like to see the Food Standards Agency become a more proactive consumer champion, taking up issues around nutrition, such as the need to curb advertising of fatty and sugary foods to children. Sir Richard George, Chairman and md Weetabix The entire food sector should be represented by a single government department led by a minister of cabinet rank. The lesson of recent food related crises is that farmers, manufacturers, processors and retailers must work together and in concert with government and its agencies. This level of co-operation will be essential as we debate and respond to the longer term implications of foot and mouth disease. Gerry Johnson, MD Booker Cash & Carry Bootlegging is a very important issue that the government must stamp out.It impacts on all our lives ­ it costs Booker money, it seriously disadvantages our independent retail customers and does untold social damage through underage smoking and drinking. The penalties for bootleggers are so light they fail to act as a deterrent. The new government must tackle this problem through bigger fines and custodial sentences, as they do for drug smugglers. {{NEWS }}