Ahead of a crunch Cabinet trade meeting today (Thursday), the SNP has warned the Tory government against “ploughing ahead with its blatant betrayal” of Scotland’s farmers.
With key government ministers set to discuss details of a proposed post-Brexit trade deal with Australia – which could see tariff-free access granted to Australian farmers – the SNP’s Deidre Brock (pictured) said that the impact of the deal on Scotland’s farming and crofting communities would be “catastrophic.”
The call comes after the President of the National Farmers Union Scotland, Martin Kennedy, told ITV that farmers will feel “seriously betrayed” by the plans.
And, NFU President Minette Batters warned that “the complete removal of tariffs on all their exports to the UK […] would make life unbearable for small British family farms.”
Meanwhile, when challenged to ditch the plans at Prime Minister’s Questions yesterday by Ian Blackford, Boris Johnson failed to give a straight answer and refused to recognise the damage it will inflict on farming and crofting communities.
Commenting, the SNP’s Shadow DEFRA spokesperson Deidre Brock MP said:
“The Tory government’s post-Brexit plans have been one betrayal after another.
“With our fishing sector still suffering from the impact of Brexit, Boris Johnson is intent on going further by now selling out our farmers and crofters.
“Reported plans to grant tariff-free access to Australian farmers would have disastrous consequences for our farmers – with many being pushed out of business altogether.
“Rather than ploughing ahead with their blatant betrayal of Scotland’s farming and crofting communities, they must ditch these proposals.”