Dairy exports to be subject of Parliamentary inquiry

By Noli Dinkovski contact

- Last updated on GMT

The Parliamentary group also plans to look at sustainability and the dairy sector later this year
The Parliamentary group also plans to look at sustainability and the dairy sector later this year
Food and drink manufacturers are being asked to submit evidence to a Parliamentary inquiry on the future of dairy exports.

The All-Party Parliamentary Group on Dairy (APPG) plans to hear from a range of speakers later this month.

Representatives from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, and the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board plan to use the inquiry to outline current export data and examine what export strategy could look like when the UK has left the EU.

Scott Mann MP, chair of the Dairy APPG, said: “I’m delighted to launch this inquiry on behalf of the Dairy APPG and understand the framework within which British dairy exports can thrive.

“These are exciting times, but I want to know what practical and realistic help the Government can provide to help the industry post-Brexit.”

Sustainability and packaging

In the coming year, the Dairy APPG also plans to look at sustainability and the dairy sector, as well as look at innovations in milk packaging.

Scott Mann, MP for North Cornwall, was elected new chair of the Dairy APPG at its Annual General Meeting on 21 February. 

Four vice-chairs were also elected: Steve Double MP (St Austell and Newquay), Angela Smith MP (Penistone and Stocksbridge), Chris Davies MP (Brecon and Radnor), and David Simpson MP (Portadown).

Written contributions to the inquiry should be forwarded to the APPG secretariat here​.

In April, the Dairy APPG welcomed the Government’s decision to exempt dairy-based drinks from the Soft Drinks Industry Levy.

Nutritional value of dairy

The Dairy APPG held an inquiry on the nutritional value of dairy products in 2017. According to the group, the inquiry received a “very large body of evidence” ​suggesting that the consumption of dairy products did not have a negative effect on weight, and could even have a positive impact.

At the end of May, the Select Health Committee called for dairy-based drinks with added sugar to be included in the levy​ as part of its report on childhood obesity.

The committee said it was “unconvinced by the rationale”​ for excluding milk-based sugary drinks from the levy, adding that their exclusion was “a missed opportunity”​ to drive progress much faster.

In response, the Dairy APPG said including dairy-based drinks “would send a negative message to consumers as well as to UK farmers and manufacturers who work around the clock to produce healthy and wholesome foods”​.

Related topics: Supply Chain, Dairy, Brexit Debate

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