New Brexit rules and EU vet shortage put meat imports at risk

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A lack of vets in Europe could force meat suppliers in the EU to hold back deliveries earmarked for the UK under new post-Brexit rules set to come in this week, experts have warned.

The British Meat Processors Association (BMPA) has concerns that imports may be held back due to a shortage of vet availability in the European Union to carry out checks needed under the new rules.

Peter Hardwick, trade policy adviser at the BMPA, said he believed suppliers would “take the UK government’s rules at face value”, and he expected some big suppliers not to risk their stock or reputation by sending orders without a health certificate.

On Wednesday, the government will launch the first stage of its new border policy, which will overhaul the way plant and animal products can be imported from the European Union.

This stage of the “border target operating model” will require all meat and dairy exports to be checked by a vet within the European country before they can be sent to the UK. It requires vets to fill in a seven-page document certifying that the animal has been free of disease and has certain vaccinations. Currently, no health checks are required on imports.

 

Jack Simpson | The Guardian

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