Batters meets with PM to debate British food standards

Batters meets with PM to debate British food standards

Following the decision by MPs to reject changes to the Agriculture Bill, president of the National Farmers Union (NFU), Minette Batters, visited Prime Minister Boris Johnson at Downing Street to stress the importance of protecting British food standards in post-Brexit trade deals.

NFU president, Minette Batters.

During the meeting, Batters called on Johnson to strengthen the new Trade and Agriculture Commission to allow MPs to discuss how trade deals would affect British food and farming. She also called for the level of parliamentary scrutiny of trade deals to be increased.

The meeting follows the decision from MPs to reject a series of amendments to the Agriculture Bill, which included giving the Trade and Agriculture Commission the power to scrutinise any future trade deals.

Batters, and other key players within the UK meat industry, had hit out at the result of the vote, saying it had put: “the future of British farming at stake.”

“I hope to continue to have constructive discussions with the Prime Minister and his Government ministers as the Agriculture Bill reaches its final stages and throughout our trade negotiations with the EU and others.”

Commenting on her meeting with the Prime Minister, Batters said: “It was good to have the opportunity to meet with the Prime Minister at such an important time for British farming.

“We are at a juncture that will have ramifications for both farming and the wider public for decades to come. I made clear that the nation cares deeply about British food and the high standards it is produced to. They do not want to see it undermined by imported food that could be produced to standards that are illegal here.

“Already, over a million people have signed our petition and tens of thousands of letters have been written to MPs on this issue. Those people want action to ensure our high standards of food production are not undercut. 

“I hope to continue to have constructive discussions with the Prime Minister and his Government ministers as the Agriculture Bill reaches its final stages and throughout our trade negotiations with the EU and others.”

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