Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, will lead a roundtable meeting next week with Michael Gove, the Minister in charge of no-deal Brexit planning, and Farming and Rural Affairs Secretary George Eustice, to discuss the effect of a no-deal exit from the EU on food producers in the Northern Isles. The virtual meeting, on Thursday 26 November, will involve representatives from the Northern Isles agricultural sector as well as smaller food producers, covering topics including the impact of tariffs, trade barriers and new customs checks.
Speaking ahead of the meeting, Mr Carmichael said:
“Farmers, crofters, and other food producers in my constituency have serious concerns about the impact changes to our trading relationships will have on their livelihoods, as well as the potential consequences of tariffs being imposed on our vital exports. This meeting will provide an opportunity for local businesses to voice their concerns directly to ministers.
“Clear answers from the Government are long overdue. I look forward to hearing from Mr Gove and Mr Eustice about what steps they will be taking to support the hard-working quality producers in the Northern Isles after the end of the transition period. Whether we leave the EU with or without a deal, businesses face a significant change to their trading practices at a time when they are already dealing with the disruption caused by the pandemic. We deserve concrete answers on how Ministers plan to mitigate the coming challenges.”