NI market could be impacted New Zealand trade deal

NI market could be impacted New Zealand trade deal

A new trade deal between UK and New Zealand has been criticised by Northern Ireland farmers who say it will allow imports of meat that have been produced to lower welfare standards.Farmers say the deal allows New Zealand farmers to undercut British farmers with an influx of cheaper meat.

However, the Ulster Farmers Union claimed certain farming sectors have been “sold-out” and its family farm structure has become “vulnerable practically overnight.”

UFU president Victor Chestnutt said: “UK farming and local food production has been completely undermined by this New Zealand trade deal.

“Combined with the Australia agreement at the beginning of this year, Government has granted access to a significant increase of imported food allowing it into our market, with no guarantees about how it was produced or it it meets our world leading standards.”

The UFU president is now urging the British Government to adopt similar approaches to New Zealand and Australia, which invest in strategic farming in order to safeguard and strengthen British agri-food production.

“Government must explain the rationale behind this new trade deal with New Zealand immediately, highlighting how it will benefit UK agriculture, our world leading standards and the future of local food production,” he added.

LSL News.