First Fruits of BREXIT: Toxic Trade Deal with USA

Post-Brexit stage 1: Surrender British sovereignty to the USA in shockingly one-sided trade deal.

Inflatable Chicken Mimicking Donald Trump photo by Mandel Ngan / AFP) (Photo by MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images)

Why chlorine-washed chicken?  

US farmers keep their costs down by avoiding the welfare and hygiene regulations that rightly apply in the UK.  Chickens farmed in the USA suffer more cruelty and insanitary conditions, and therefore are more prone to carrying human pathogens.  To put that in plain English, American food producers are allowed to have small quantities of rodent filth or insect parts in their product.  Washing them in chlorine as a final stage of meat production is one American way of reducing the threat to human health.  In fact there are several ways in which UK farmers offer us something better than we would get from the USA.  Think antibiotics, hormones and genetic modification.  Before the last election the Conservative Party promised in their manifesto: “in all of our trade negotiations, we will not compromise on our high environmental protection, animal welfare and food standards”.  But at the first snarl from the USA’s negotiators they have rolled over and capitulated.

chlorine washing
poultry farming in USA
Cows in barn and hand with syringe
British cows grazing

What else?  The NHS.  

The USA negotiators are after three things: access to the NHS internal market, privatisation of public services, and raising the prices the NHS pays for drugs.  Republican senator Todd Young said he was “always looking for opportunities to open up foreign markets”.  One risk from the trade negotiations is ‘ratchet clauses’ which would mean that any public service, once privatised, can never be returned to public ownership.  You might think the British Government would fight to protect the NHS during trade talks with the USA, but judging by past experience they will not.  During TTIP – the trade round between the US and the EU our Government did not explicitly protect the NHS.

NHS rainbow
nurses in PPE

So far so horrible.  We are in the grip of a global pandemic of an infectious disease, quite possibly caused by poor animal hygiene; we rely more heavily on the NHS now, than at any time most of us can remember.  Meanwhile our own Government is selling out to a trade deal that sees the UK as a low-standards market ripe for US ownership and profiteering.  I haven’t even begun to write about the ways the US Trade Deal will kerb our attempts to tackle climate change, and rob us of our sovereignty through Corporate Courts – to read about these see: First Fruits of BREXIT part 2 … Is this really what we wanted when we voted to “Take Back Control”?

References

Global Justice Now’s Think Global for June 2020: http://www.GlobalJustice.org and their https://www.globaljustice.org.uk/resources/trading-trump-what-we-can-expect-us-uk-trade-deal?“rodent filth & insect fragments”: https://unearthed.greenpeace.org/2020/05/14/chlorinated-chicken-brexit-trade-talks-liz-truss/

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