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No 10 fails to guarantee keeping ban on hormone-injected beef in Australia trade deal

No 10 has refused to guarantee {that a} ban on hormone-injected beef will stay in place in the trade deal with Australia, set to be sealed inside weeks.

Boris Johnson’s spokesman insisted the UK is not going to “compromise on our animal welfare or food standards” – however declined, 4 instances, to give an specific dedication on using hormones.

Instead, he mentioned solely that meals allowed in below future offers will “have to comply with our import requirements”, with out setting out what they’d be.

The phrases fell far in need of the guarantee given, final year, by each Liz Truss, the trade secretary, and the setting secretary George Eustice – who at the moment are locked in a fierce spat over the Australia deal.

In November, the pair wrote: “Chlorinated chicken and hormone-injected beef are already banned in the UK and we will not negotiate to remove that ban in a trade deal.”

Australia is understood to have demanded, way back to 2018, that Britain accepts hormone-treated beef imports as the value of a symbolic early post-Brexit trade settlement.

The follow is widespread in Australia and the EU has claimed at the very least one of many hormones utilized by cattle farmers is carcinogenic – one thing fiercely disputed by Canberra.

The authorities has assured that “any changes to existing food safety legislation would require new legislation to be brought before parliament”.

But some MPs stay suspicious that modifications might be made utilizing laws, moderately than main laws – utilizing so-called ‘Henry VIII powers’ to bypass MPs.

Anne McIntosh, a Conservative peer and campaigner, advised The Independent: “The government must honour its commitment to keep the trust of the British people, one million of whom signed the petition calling for such a safeguard.

“That means no entry for any beef from Australia or elsewhere produced with hormones or in other ways does not meet our standards.”

The National Farmers Union has reacted angrily to an obvious Cabinet settlement to provide Australia a zero-tariff, zero quota trade deal, regardless of farmers’ fears of smash.

Mr Johnson is believed to have given the go-ahead for the provide to be made, settling a serious Cabinet row and over-ruling the issues of Mr Eustice and Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove.

The full removing of tariffs and quotas is barely like to occur after up to 15 years – in an try to calm the protests of anxious farming teams.

But Minette Batters, the NFU president, mentioned: “If accurate, this will have a massive impact on British farming – and we are still waiting to hear from government.

“A tariff-free trade deal with Australia will jeopardise our own farming industry and will cause the demise of many, many beef and sheep farms throughout the UK. This is true whether tariffs are dropped immediately or in 15 years’ time.”

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