Four UK farming unions have urged MPs to take all the necessary steps for the UK to avoid a no-deal Brexit, which they claim could see catastrophic impact on the nation’s food and farming sector.
In a letter to all MPs the organisations highlighted the serious implications a no-deal Brexit could have for the industry and urged them to ‘take all the steps necessary to avoid such a departure coming to pass’.
The letter arguing that the impact of a no-deal Brexit could cause a huge disruption for the food and farming sector as a result of an effective trade embargo on the export of UK animals and animal-based products. There is also potential for sectors to face particularly high customs tariffs on exports. For example, the effective EU tariff would be 65% on beef, 46% on lamb and 27% on chicken.
The four UK farming unions are the NFU, NFU Cymru, NFU Scotland and Ulster Farmers’ Union.
In the joint letter, the organisations said:
“Brexit will mean that, for the first time in a generation, UK politicians will have direct responsibility for ensuring our nation is properly fed.
“Yet, in the face of this fundamental responsibility, there is a very real risk that a disorderly Brexit will lead to an immediate reliance on overseas imports, produced to lower standards, while many UK farms struggle to survive.”