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UK to establish trade commission to monitor post-Brexit food standards

Christian Fernsby ▼ | July 1, 2020
The UK government has announced that it will establish a new Trade and Agriculture Commission to help safeguard food standards in any post-Brexit trade deals.
Elizabeth Truss
Secretary   Elizabeth Truss
International trade secretary Liz Truss made the announcement in a letter to the president of the National Farmers’ Union (NFU) Minette Batters, and the commission will reportedly advise ministers and scrutinise the UK’s approach to post-Brexit trade agreements.

Topics: Brexit food UK

The move follows a campaign from several of the UK’s main farming unions, which have lobbied the government to ensure that trade agreements which result in lower food safety and animal welfare standards should be prevented.

Earlier this month, concerns about post-Brexit food safety standards intensified as Prime Minister Boris Johnson implied that a trade deal with the US could allow the import of certain products that are currently banned from sale into the UK, such as chlorine-dipped chicken and hormone-treated beef and pork.

In a letter to NFU president Minette Batters, Truss claimed that the decision to form the commission followed “positive discussions” with four of the UK’s largest farming unions – the NFU, NFU Scotland, NFU Cymru and Ulster Farmers’ Union.

Truss wrote: “I wholeheartedly agree that any trade deal the UK strikes must be fair and reciprocal to our farmers, and must not compromise on our high standards of food safety and animal welfare.