Farmers Protection Dropped

Posted on 17th June, 2021


Tariffs will be scrapped immediately on imported beef and lamb from Australia, triggering accusations that the trade deal struck by Boris Johnson will send UK farmers “to the wall”.


"The small print of the first major post-Brexit agreement – revealed by Canberra, as the UK government tried to keep it under wraps – revealed a pledge to protect farmers for 15 years has been dropped.

  • Instead, Australian farmers will effectively be handed tariff-free access from day one, up to a “cap” on sales that is 60 times the current level of imported beef.
  • The detail was revealed as experts warned the overall economic boost from the deal would be “close to zero” – and the government admitted the average household would be just £1.20 a year better off.
  • MPs are demanding the power to scrutinise the deal immediately, but ministers ... plan to deny full access until the autumn, when critics fear it will be too late" (Article and PDF)

Watchdog supposed to scrutinise Australia trade deal still will not exist when deal is signed

  • "Liz Truss accused of ‘subverting’ commitment to parliament by blocking access to agreement until autumn
  • A watchdog designed to ensure the Australia trade deal does not undermine UK food and animal welfare rules will not be set up until months after it is signed" (PDF)


Transformation of Agriculture and the use of Insects (FEB20)


"Themed collaborative R&D: we will fund collaborative projects, which will need to involve farming or agri-food businesses working with researchers, to carry out R&D focused on strategic, high-priority societal challenges with the potential to transform agricultural productivity over longer time horizons. We have identified a set of themes and will develop these to ensure that they are targeted on innovative solutions to these challenges"


"Themes include:

  • adaption to climate change and clean growth (e.g. best practice approaches or next generation fertilisers),
  • integrated farm management (e.g. sustainable agronomy and integrated pest management),
  • sustainable protein and balanced nutrition (e.g. plant based protein and sustainable livestock production),
  • genetics and genomics for enhanced productivity (e.g. advanced breeding technology),
  • renewable materials for the bioeconomy (e.g. biomass crops or agroforestry),
  • and advanced sensor technologies and data driven approaches,
  • For example, we could fund transformative collaborative projects seeking to develop insect based production systems or new farm systems with reduced environmental impacts which use integrated and advanced automation" (page 22)
  • ["By 2018, insects will be permitted in aquaculture for the first time, and novel food legislation will be ready to assess insects for human consumption (PDF) and EU Edible Insects (APR20)]


"The third tier in our current proposal would be focused on delivering landscape scale land-use change projects, where such projects drive added value over and above what can be delivered through tiers 1 and 2."


  • "It will coordinate projects that are critical in helping us to meet ambitious environmental commitments such as our net zero target. Projects could include woodland and forest creation, peatland restoration and the creation of coastal habitats such as wetlands and salt marsh; these carbon rich habitats would also deliver additional environmental outcomes, such as biodiversity and flood mitigation" (page 10)


Agricultural Productivity Working Group Report Feb20

Including case studies of:

  • Data Linker (Page 37)
  • Livestock Identification Programme (Page 38)
  • Knowledge Exchange in the Northern Ireland pig sector (Page 39)
  • Insect biomass (Page 41)
    • "Countries and companies at international and European levels are progressing swiftly to develop this important sector ... The Task and Finish Group identified the following actions as important to the rapid development of the industry in the UK ... Central government ... to support a national insect biomass conversion industry and global business potential (protein production, waste valorisation, novel products)."
    • " UK position post EU Exit offers a potential opportunity to progress enabling legislation at a faster rate than at the EU level"
  • Robotics and autonomous systems (Page 43)
  • Professional training (Page 45)
  • Electricity requirements for agricultural vehicles (Page 47)
  • Ireland: succession farm partnership tax concessions (Page 48)


See also:

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