The UK’s departure from the European Union could bring GM crops to our fields and our shopping baskets. Find out why and what you can do to safeguard our food and our farms.
GM Freeze is campaigning to protect UK farmers right to farm responsibly, fairly and sustainably and consumers’ right to make informed choices.
This means ensuring that the UK has:
Rigorous GM regulation that protects people, animals and the environment.
GM labelling that allows people to take control of what they are eating.
Protection from GM contamination.
Safeguard our Farms is our campaign to secure robust GM regulation and proper protection from GM contamination, as the UK leaves the European Union,
Don’t Hide What’s Inside is our campaign to ensure that the UK retains the requirement for GM ingredients to be clearly identified on food labels after Brexit.
If you live in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland, please contact your MP, MSPs, AM or MLAs to highlight the risk that Brexit could bring GM to their fields, whether they want it or not.
Key Brexit issues that affect GM in food and farming
Withdrawal and retained EU Law
The UK’s relationship with the EU after 31 October is the subject of intense political debate.
The various withdrawal deals proposed so far would see the UK abide by EU rules on GM in food and farming until December 2020. After that point, things could change drastically.
If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, we will start on day one with current regulations temporarily transferred into UK law but these rules will then be open to immediate and potentially drastic amendment. In the meantime, devolution arrangements and competency gaps (eg UK agencies are not equipped to take on the role played by the European Food Safety Authority) mean that it may not be possible for the new UK regulations to operate properly.
Outside of the EU, the UK will negotiate trade deals with other countries, including those that have much lower standards of regulation on GM food and crops. GM regulations have already been identified as a non-tariff barrier to trade so we know that they are vulnerable. GM Freeze has joined the Stop ISDS campaign to oppose the inclusion of investor-state dispute settlement in any future trade deals.
A new approach to agriculture
Farming is a key policy area for change after Brexit. A new Agriculture Bill is working its way through the parliamentary process.
Stay in touch, stay connected
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GM Freeze is part of the Sustain Alliance for Better Food and Farming and the Brexit Civil Society Alliance, which are both working to achieve the best possible policy outcomes as the UK prepares to leave the EU.
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This page was last updated on 8 October 2019