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Direct Payments to Farmers (Legislative Continuity) Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:50 pm on 21st January 2020.

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Photo of Luke Pollard Luke Pollard Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs 12:50 pm, 21st January 2020

I am not really interested in Brexit soundbites, but I am interested in Brexit detail. It might be easy for the Chancellor to give a quote about divergence in the media, but divergence on farm standards means the potential for disruption at the border, difficulty in exporting our products and lower standards. It is important that Ministers come out and explain what divergence means in the context of agriculture, because divergence from high standards often means lower standards, and no matter what assurances are given, until it is written into a Bill that our standards will be protected and that there will be no divergence and no lowering of standards, there is every chance that people will doubt the motives of those who offer lofty soundbites but take different actions.