95% Britons say UK should maintain existing food standards in any future UK-US trade deal

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25th June 2020 12:25 - Food

95% Britons say UK should maintain existing food standards in any future UK-US trade deal: A survey of 2,000 UK adults carried out by consumer group Which?, has found that the overwhelming majority of Britons are against the weakening of food standards in the event of a future UK-US trade deal.

The research found that around three-quarters of respondents (74%) are opposed to importing products such as hormone-treated beef and chlorinated chicken. 

Sixty-three percent of respondents said that chlorinated chicken, permitted in the US, should not be allowed into the UK - even if it is correctly labelled as such, with a similar response given when considering hormone-treated beef (61%). 

Eight in ten people (80%) said they would be uncomfortable consuming meat that had been produced using growth hormones, while more than three-quarters (77%) said they would feel uncomfortable eating meat treated with antibiotics in order to promote growth. Slightly fewer (73%) reported they would not feel comfortable consuming chicken that had been chlorine-washed. 

Just 16% of people from more affluent households said that the UK should be allowed to import food with lower standards than are currently in place, which compared to 11% from less affluent households.

86% of respondents said they feared a free trade agreement following Brexit could mean products that are currently not permitted in the UK becoming available to buy. 

Sue Davies, head of consumer protection and food policy at Which?, said: "Food standards in the UK must not be compromised by any trade deal that would betray decades of progress on food safety, quality and animal welfare."

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