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Post-Brexit agriculture imports continue to frustrate UK poultry industry

As the UK pursues multiple trade deals amid Brexit negotiations, the British Poultry Council calls on the UK Government to live up to its commitment to maintain high food safety and welfare standards in trade agreements.

5 June 2020, at 2:10pm

British Poultry Council, Chief Executive, Richard Griffiths, said: “We are concerned about reports that food produced to standards not permitted in the UK is to be allowed under a US-UK trade deal. We are calling on Government for urgent clarification and whether it is official policy to allow trade in these products under a tariff regime. The Government has repeatedly stated the UK will not compromise on our high environmental protection, animal welfare and food standards in trade negotiations, and we are asking them to live up to that commitment.

To allow these products, even with tariffs attached, sells out the standards and food values that British farmers have worked incredibly hard to achieve. The UK has spent a long time establishing and implementing standards that provide our citizens with safe, wholesome, and nutritious food, and that are applied to both home-grown and imported produce. This impetuous action could also compromise our future trading relationship with the EU and place barriers between us and our biggest and closest trading partner.

Maintaining high British standards and continuing a healthy trading relationship with the EU is vital to UK food security. Government must not negotiate trade agreements that compromise Britain’s competitiveness. Instead of protecting food businesses, to allow lower standard imports will make it even more difficult for British producers to feed the nation at a time when our food security should be paramount.”