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FDF response to EFRA Committee report - Brexit: Trade in Food

18 February 2018

FDF response to EFRA Committee report - Brexit: Trade in Food

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Ian Wright CBE, Director General of the Food and Drink Federation (FDF), said:

“FDF has repeatedly stated that those sectors which form the UK's £112 billion 'farm-to-fork' supply chain would be most affected by Brexit, and the conclusions from the latest EFRA Committee report affirm this.

“We welcome the Committee's findings, particularly in relation to the vital need for continued barrier-free and tariff-free trade with the EU27. Our members' competitiveness relies heavily on frictionless imports and exports of ingredients and finished goods. Lengthy customs procedures and delays at ports and borders would pose a real risk to the choice of food and drink that consumers currently enjoy at all price points.

“We echo the Committee's call for Government to publish an impact assessment on the effects of Brexit. However, no one part of the food and drink supply chain exists in isolation. For this work to be truly useful it must also examine the consequences for sub-sectors of the UK's food and drink manufacturing industry.

“With the clock ticking louder every day, we remain acutely aware that Government must negotiate a special agreement for trade in food products during the transition period that avoids the EU's standard third country requirements. Without this explicit agreement, our most successful businesses will face burdensome and costly product checks and inspections at borders affecting up to £12bn worth of exports to customers in Europe.

“Government must reassure us that they will do everything in their power over the coming months to prioritise the UK's economic health and the future of the food chain.”

More information

Contact Ted Woodward, Corporate Affairs Division, at: ted.woodward@fdf.org.uk, or +44 (0) 20 7420 7140.

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Distribution channels: Food & Beverage Industry