The Government have made it clear that our exit from the EU will not lead to a lowering of our high animal welfare standards. Our regulatory system will offer the same level of assurance of animal welfare following our departure from the EU as it does now. The European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 will ensure that existing EU standards are maintained once we leave the EU, and we are actively exploring options for strengthening the UK system in the future.
The ban we announced on
DEFRA leads on agricultural issues in these trade deals and there is a clear intention that our standards will not be watered down.
Can the Minister lay to rest some of the vile scare stories that have been emanating in the past few months about how, in certain circumstances in which we may leave the EU, there will be a diminution in animal care standards? Can he confirm that whatever the circumstances after
The hon. Gentleman makes a good point, and I assure him that we will make sure the existing regulations come over and we will maintain those high standards.
Inside or outside the EU, Boohoo, the online retailer, has been found to be advertising clothing as “faux fur” when in fact it has contained animal fur, including rabbit. So may I ask what checks are in place and what action the Government are prepared to take to ensure that there is no animal cruelty in the clothing industry?
The hon. Lady raises an important point. This is a clear trading standards issue and, as I understand it, action has been taken, as it should be in those circumstances.