In a joint letter sent to the secretariat general of the European Commission, farmers and co-operative group Copa and Cogeca, the European liaison committee for agricultural and agri-food trading CELCAA, and the trade association for the European food and drink sector FoodDrinkEurope raised concerns that some further actions would still need to be urgently adopted or adapted in order to prevent the negative impact of a no-deal.
They said that while they welcomed the measures already taken by the European Commission, they believed that “some additional actions were still needed to mitigate the potential devastating impact that a no-deal Brexit could have on the European agri-food industry”.
According to the letter’s signatories, there were still several areas in which the Commission’s proposals needed to be clarified and improved to avoid any risk of significant disruption.
They have requested temporary procedures for EU agri-food products that would allow the goods to be cleared at the premises of the operator, the mutual recognition of SPS certification (food safety and phytosanitary) by the EU and the UK, as well as the preparation of a tailor-made plan to support specific productions such as livestock.
The joint letter said that it was looking “increasingly likely” the UK would leave the EU without a deal and called for enhanced coordination and communication between sectorial representatives, Commission Directorates General, and national authorities.
The news comes as the UK Government continued its political wrangling in Westminster. Prime Minister Theresa May has also said she will step down if a vote on the withdrawal agreement is made.