Former Defra secretary of state, Tory leadership contender and foreign secretary Liz Truss wants to slash through EU red tape, saying that Brexit has given the UK a ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ opportunity to free British farming.
Miss Truss recently vowed to remove constrictive EU regulations, such as the restrictive use of drones for targeted fertilising. She also said that her government will review poultry, livestock, dairy, horticulture and animal health regulations, to simplify processes and ensure sector resilience and adaptability.
With the seasonal workers visa scheme due to expire in 2024, Miss Truss added that she would extend the scheme – to provide farmers with the security that they could continue to use foreign labour. The issue of labour was exacerbated post-Brexit and during the Covid pandemic, as foreign labour work visas were revoked which resulted in the build up of pigs on farms and the culling of thousands of healthy animals. A source for the Daily Mail said that Miss Truss would coordinate a new workers scheme in alliance with farmers, to promote a more secure future for the industry.
“I understand the challenges faced by farmers and they can trust me to deliver the changes they need,” said Miss Truss, as concerns rise around the safety of UK food, with claims that the Government is not taking it seriously.
“I will cut the red tape that is holding them back and hitting them in their pocket. The pandemic and cost of living crisis have shown it is more vital than ever for us to ensure we have a high-quality and affordable supply of British food.”