MPs reject changes to agriculture bill

MPs have rejected the latest attempt to require imported food to meet domestic legal standards. 

MPs have voted against an amendment to the agriculture bill to force trade deals to meet UK animal welfare and food safety walls.

The bill – which is designed to prepare the farming industry for when the UK no longer has to follow EU laws and rules next year – returned to the Commons on Monday following amendments.

The government has said that EU rules banning imports of chlorine-washed chicken and other products will be automatically written into UK law once the post-Brexit transition period ends.

Katie White, executive director of advocacy and campaigns at WWF said: ‘It’s extremely disappointing that the House of Commons voted down the amendment to save our standards in Parliament tonight.

‘Our recent YouGov survey showed that 92% of people in the UK think we should protect British standards on food and farm animal welfare in future trade deals.

‘We hope the Lords take this public mandate to deliver the Conservative manifesto commitment to maintain standards – especially after it was significantly backed by Conservative MPs.

‘We call on Peers to secure guarantees that the public and MPs are told upfront about any changes to standards that might happen as a result of trade deals and that the final say on any changes will be a decision for our elected representatives in Parliament.

‘Making law is often about compromise, and we hope that government will reconsider their opposition in a bid to fix our broken food system, support British farmers, and protect nature for generations to come.’

Photo Credit – Pixabay

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Pippa Neill

Pippa Neill

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