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Reaction to UK's announcement of Trade and Agriculture Commission

30 June 2020

The British Veterinary Association and NOAH welcome the formation of the new Trade and Agriculture Commission, and stress that animal health and welfare must be safeguarded.

Statement from the British Veterinary Association: 

The British Veterinary Association (BVA) has welcomed the announcement from Trade Secretary Liz Truss that a new Trade and Agriculture Commission will be established. The advisory Commission will consider the policies that the UK Government should adopt in free trade agreements to make sure UK animal welfare and production standards are not undermined.

Commenting, BVA Senior Vice President Simon Doherty said:

“The veterinary profession has always been clear that any new trade agreements must not undermine the UK’s high animal health and welfare standards. Along with our colleagues in the farming industry we have been pushing for this commitment to be enshrined in legislation.

“We welcome the new Trade and Agriculture Commission but it is essential that veterinary expertise is at the heart of its membership and remit. Vets are critical to facilitating international trade and are committed to protecting and enhancing animal health and welfare and public health. Although the Commission only has an advisory role it is important that its advice is genuinely listened to and acted on by the Government. There is huge public concern about a lowering of animal welfare standards and consumers need to have confidence in what they are buying.”

Statement from NOAH (National Office of Animal Health)

NOAH has welcomed the establishment of a Trade and Agriculture Commission, as announced by Liz Truss.

NOAH chief executive Dawn Howard said: “As we have outlined in our Vision for UK Animal Health and Welfare, high standards of animal health are an integral part of excellent animal welfare and food standards, something that British consumers expect and support.

“This move is a positive development: not only with the potential to deliver benefits in terms of animal welfare in the UK and beyond but to also support raising productivity, improved sustainability and resilience of UK farms – helping them to capitalise on opportunities for trading internationally and strengthening our food security.

“We look forward to supporting the Commission in matters relating to animal health,” she said.



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