Pressure on Government to safeguard the UK food and drink supply chain post-Brexit continues to increase, as industry bodies urged negotiators not to sacrifice jobs and standards in pursuit of trade deals outside the EU.
Brexit uncertainty and delays at the border will mean the shellfish sector suffers “disproportionately”, according to Luke Pollard, Labour (Co-operative) MP for Plymouth Sutton and Devonport and shadow environment secretary.
George Eustice, secretary of state for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), has dismissed claims that fishing will be used as a bargaining chip in the UK’s trade agreement with the EU.
The availability of seasonal staff, increasing cost pressures and the rise of veganism are all key challenges that will shape the future of food and drink in the UK, according to Regency Purchasing Group.
The UK will be at risk of higher food prices, reduced supply of short shelf-life goods and a lack of choice as a result of border friction with the EU, according to the British Retail Consortium (BRC).
UK-based fish processors are pushing for the Government to close trade deals with countries outside the EU, such as Norway and Iceland, as negotiations with the EU and UK are set to heat up over fishing rights.
A new policy paper recommending common themes the Government should use to develop future trade policy has been launched by a collaboration of food and drink organisations from across the supply chain.
Calls to fast-track deals with China and the US, concerns for the future of dairy trade with the EU and the impact of the UK’s exit from the EU on cold storage stockpiling all feature in this round-up of food industry Brexit news.