The National Farmers’ Union says the Government should invest more to help open new markets for British agriculture.
UK and Australia recently announced a trade agreement that includes a tapering to “zero tariff, zero quota” on Australian beef and lamb imports.
NFU president Minette Batters said the UK Government needs to invest more in helping British farmers to sell into new markets in Asia, as well as protect them from imports made to lower environmental and welfare standards.
“If we want to just raise standards here and not ask the same of other countries and import stuff that we’re not allowed to do here, that is against the law, then my goodness, that’s going to be seismic in its impact,” said NFU president Minette Batters.
The farming group has warned that Boris Johnson urgently needs to produce a strategy that will enable British agriculture to cope with the changes following the UK’s trade deal with Australia.
Ms Batters said it would take five to 10 years to break into new markets, and called for urgent investment in the UK’s export promotion to match other countries.
The NFU warned that other countries such as the US, Canada and New Zealand – which are looking to conclude a trade agreement with the UK by the end of August.
“Talking to those other countries, they see the UK-Australia trade deal as a precedent and they want the same,” Ms Batters added.