New Impact Report reveals the real cost of Brexit to the UK meat industry
As we approach the end of the first quarter of trading outside the EU, The British Meat Processors Association has published a Brexit Impact Report which draws on the experiences of meat exporters to date.
Dismissing trade disruption at the borders as simply short term ‘teething problems’ is no longer credible. As we near the end of the first quarter of trading outside the EU single market, British meat companies are painting a very different picture. They are reporting systemic weaknesses in the current export system, mountains of red tape and a potential permanent loss of trade of between 20 and 50 percent.
This Brexit Impact Report (attached) seeks to differentiate between ‘teething problems’ and the more serious impediments to trade that are affecting British companies whose businesses rely heavily on trade with our nearest neighbour. It also offers constructive recommendations to address these problems.
Nick Allen, CEO of The British Meat Processors Association explains: “British companies who are dealing with the new issues on the ground are best placed to offer constructive solutions; but these solutions need support and investment from Government to build a new system that is fit for purpose.”
The report focuses on three key areas that, if addressed, would drastically improve our ability to hold on to our trade with EU customers.
- Inspection and certification – learning from other more efficient and cost-effective systems
- Electronic documentation – moving from an antiquated paper-based system to a modern, integrated digital system
- Common Veterinary Area – negotiating a more robust agreement with the EU to follow parallel rules which would ease problems sending food to both the EU and to Northern Ireland
Nick Allen added: “The export hurdles we face are now in plain sight and are not going away. We need Government to urgently re-engage with both the industry and the EU to work out detailed and lasting solutions. The British Meat Processors Association and its members stand ready to consult with Government and map out those solutions”.