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HomeNewsPost-Brexit: The Dilemma of Food Checks and the UK's Economic Challenges

Post-Brexit: The Dilemma of Food Checks and the UK’s Economic Challenges

The post-Brexit landscape continues to reveal its complexities and challenges. One of the decisions that has raised particular interest and concern is the postponement, for the fifth time, of the introduction of checks on food, plants, and animal products coming from the European Union. This delay pushes back the implementation of such controls until the end of January next year. Many had anticipated this further postponement, but the decision has raised quite a few concerns among industry operators. The official reasons provided by the British government emphasize the desire to offer businesses a longer adaptation period to the new regulations.

However, the perception of many operators is that they are under pressure, given the shortened timeframe to adapt to the new directives. Beyond operational issues, there is a shadow linked to the economic impact of these choices. In a period already marked by inflationary tensions and the cost of living crisis, the introduction of these checks could potentially exacerbate the increase in food prices. Even if official estimates try to downplay it, indicating an increase of less than 0.2% over a span of three years, British households might feel the consequences. Another point of reflection concerns the asymmetry of the checks.

Post-Brexit: checks for products from abroad are continually postponed.

While exports from the UK to the EU have been subject to checks since January 2021. Checks for incoming products will start with a three-year delay. This disparity has caused discontent among British food producers, who see their European competitors in an advantageous position. Starting from January 30th, various products from the EU will have to comply with new regulations, including the presentation of health certificates and physical inspections.

These procedures will become increasingly stringent, culminating in the introduction of safety declarations by the end of October 2024. In conclusion, as the UK sails in uncertain waters, trying to balance the needs of businesses with the challenges of sovereignty and security, the post-Brexit path still appears rugged. Today’s decisions will have a long-term impact, and only the future can tell us if they were the right choices for the British economy.

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