Friday, February 23, 2018

Brexit and food

The House of Commons Defra Committee has issued a critical report on this topic: Brexit and food

It states, 'The Government has offered no clarity to the agricultural industry on its post-Brexit policy. The Government must offer this clarity and stability so that the industry has the confidence to invest and take advantage of the opportunities offered to the sector post-Brexit. We would like to see the Government offer policies that would stimulate home grown food production.'

'The UK has an international reputation for high animal welfare, environmental and food standards. These must not be sacrificed on the altar of cheap imports. Doing so could undermine the premium British brand and might affect our ability to negotiate trade deals with other countries. We will hold the Secretary of State to his assurances that there will be no compromise on animal welfare, environmental and food standards.'

'The Government must make it clear to industry how it intends to deal with potential regulatory divergence with the EU, and the mechanisms it will put in place to track divergence in the future.'

As a divided Government has difficulty in deciding what its policy should be on Brexit generally, I am doubtful that clarification will be forthcoming.

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