Food coalition calls for Brexit Single Market access

By Matt Atherton contact

- Last updated on GMT

75 food producers signed a letter calling for access to the Single Market after Brexit
75 food producers signed a letter calling for access to the Single Market after Brexit

Related tags: Single market, European union, United kingdom

Some of Britain’s biggest food businesses – including 2 Sisters, Müller and Wyke Farms – have urged the government to ensure continued access to the EU’s Single Market and labour after Brexit.

The plea for tariff-free access to the Single Market came from the biggest coalition of food producers in the UK’s history. The coalition of 75 organisations, employing 1M people with a value of over £92bn, signed a letter to the prime minister.

The food and farming industry needed access to a “competent and reliable”​ workforce and tariff-free access to the Single Market for it to flourish, claimed the National Farmers Union (NFU). The 75 organisations backed these claims in the letter, but also pledged support for a positive, bold and ambitious vision for the sector, post-Brexit.

‘An enormous opportunity’

The Brexit vote provided the food and farming sector with “an enormous opportunity”​, claimed NFU president Meurig Raymond. But the industry needed guarantees on labour and trade to deliver those opportunities, he added.

 “To deliver this new future, we must secure the best possible access to the Single Market and continued access to a competent and reliable workforce. Getting this right will set the foundations for a successful new British agricultural policy,”​ Raymond said.

“Agriculture is a litmus-test for the government’s Brexit negotiations. As the sector most heavily impacted by the referendum outcome, if the government can make British farming a success post-Brexit, then it will be the clearest indication that the country can succeed outside Europe.”

Food security, food safety and food hygiene

Food security, food safety and hygiene, affordable food and stewardship of the countryside would be at risk if access to labour and the best possible access to the Single Market were lost, the letter said. A Brexit deal that recognised the critical role of the food sector would benefit the UK economy, claimed the NFU.

Meanwhile, domestic growers and farmers face a “catastrophe”​ if their subsidies are not maintained after Brexit, claimed logistics firm Fowler Welch last month. The firm said food producers were well within their rights to seek subsidies from the money that the UK wouldn’t have to Europe after Brexit.

75 signatories on letter sent to Prime Minister

  • 2 Sisters Food Group
  • AB Connect part of AB Agri
  • ABP Food Group UK
  • AH Worth & Co 
  • Apetito
  • Arla Foods UK
  • Baileys Turkeys
  • Berry Gardens
  • BerryWorld
  • Branston Holdings
  • Bumble Hole Foods
  • C&J Meats
  • Capestone Organic Poultry
  • Cargill
  • Chippindale Foods
  • Cobb Vantress Europe
  • Cobrey Farms
  • Country Land and Business Association
  • Crosse & Blackwell
  • Dairy Crest
  • Dawn Meats
  • Dovecote Park
  • Dunbia
  • Euro Quality Lambs
  • Eurostock Food Group
  • Fayrefield Foods
  • Foyle Food Group 
  • Fresca Group 
  • Graham’s Family Dairy
  • G’s Growers 
  • Hewitts’ Wholesales
  • Hillier Nurseries
  • Humphrey Farms
  • Hy-line UK
  • Joice and Hill
  • J Sainsbury
  • Kelly Turkeys
  • Lactalis McLelland
  • Linden Food Group
  • Marks and Spencer
  • Mash Direct
  • Meadow Foods
  • M.H. Poskitt
  • Monaghan Mushrooms
  • Müller UK & Ireland
  • Muntons
  • Natures Way Foods
  • Neame Lea Nursery
  • Noble Foods
  • Northern Ireland Meat Exporters' Association
  • Oakland Farm Eggs
  • OMSCo
  • PD Hook / Hook 2 Sisters
  • Poupart Produce
  • Produce World Group
  • Puffin Produce 
  • Randall Parker Food Group
  • Riviera Produce
  • Scotbeef
  • South Caernarfon Creameries
  • Sunrise Poultry Farms
  • The Newey Group
  • Traditional Norfolk Poultry
  • Valefresco
  • WD Meats
  • Weetabix
  • Withers Farm
  • Wm Morrisons Supermarkets plc (in conjunction with Woodheads)
  • Wyke Farms

Related topics: Legal

Related news

Show more

1 comment

Food coalition asks for continued access to EU market and EU labour after Brexit

Posted by Gustaaf Bos,

Continued access to EU market and EU workforce can only be possibble after Brexit upon condition that the UK 1° contributues financially to the EU Budget, 2° complies with all EU legislation (e.g. REACH, food , food contact, etc.), 3° accepts free movement of goods and people from the EU in the UK and 4° does not introduce unfair competition by offering companies in the UK e.g. lower taxes or any other kind of advantages that makes competition in the internal market unfair. It might be easier to stay in the EU.

Report abuse

Follow us


View more