The US administration has demanded greater access to the UK market for its agricultural products as part of its post-Brexit trade talks.
Responding to the publication of the United States of America’s negotiating objectives for a potential UK/USA trade deal, NFU president Minette Batters said it is imperative that any future trade deals, including a possible deal with the US, do not allow the imports of food produced to lower standards than those required of British farmers.
She said: “It comes as no surprise that the USA is seeking comprehensive access to the UK’s agricultural market and is pushing for a trade deal that accepts US production standards and practices.
“British people value and demand the high standards of animal welfare, environmental protection and food safety that our own farmers adhere to. These world-leading standards must not be sacrificed in the pursuit of reaching rushed trade deals. We should not accept trade deals which allow food to be imported into this country produced in ways which would be illegal here.”
At last week’s NFU Conference in Birmingham, the NFU laid out its proposals for a high-level commission of food and farming experts that will make clear recommendations on the UK’s future food trade policy.
“It is vital that this is established as a priority,” Mrs Batters said.
“We will continue to work with others to ensure safeguards are included in legislation that establish a comprehensive role for Parliament in scrutinising and ratifying future trade deals, and to ensure food imports into the UK are produced to at least our own high standards.”