Aug 21, 2019

Don't sacrifice us for trade deal, say UK farmers

British farmers fear they could go out of business following a post-Brexit trade deal with the US, the National Farmers Union has told the BBC. NFU president Minette Batters said US farms could "Outcompete" UK producers if standards were changed. Last week, Zippy Duvall, head of the US National Farm Bureau Federation, vowed to "Make sure" that US food standards prevail in a trade pact. Mr Duvall, a poultry farmer based in Georgia, previously warned that leaving agriculture out of a deal would be considered a betrayal by US farmers. Ms Batters, who runs a mixed farming business in Wiltshire, acknowledged that "Agriculture is always the last chapter in any trade deal to be ratified" because of the compromises often involved. UK farmers have recently raised concerns about a no-deal Brexit, which could lead to high tariffs on goods exported to the EU. Lamb and live sheep exports could face tariffs of 45-50%, while some cuts of beef could see tariffs of more than 90%. If European firms start having to pay more for UK meat, they could switch to suppliers in other countries.

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