Political Print

Political Print: There is more to trade deals than chicken

As the UK Government tees up new deals, relaxing food standards in return for market access at a time of planetary breakdown smacks of the worst kind of short-termism. By Nick Hughes. Of all the insights gleaned during lockdown, the fact that chicken is a national obsession is among the most conclusive. As post-lockdown queues…
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UK eyes larger slice of US trade pie

Before Covid-19 shunted Brexit into the background the UK government revealed its priorities for a trade deal with the United States. Nick Hughes looks at the detail and the implications for the food sector. What does the UK want from a US trade deal? In short, a bigger slice of the trade pie. Total trade…
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Unconvincing Villiers leaves more questions than answers

The appearance of DEFRA secretary of state Theresa Villiers at a recent conference for UK farmers didn’t provide the clarity or reassurance the food industry is seeking for life in a post-EU world, writes Nick Hughes. When she took to the stage at this month’s annual Oxford Farming Conference Theresa Villiers had the opportunity to…
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Plastic tax gets green light

The government has reiterated plans to charge for single-use plastic items as part of package of measures to tackle waste set out in the Queen’s Speech. Plans to extend producer responsibility, ensure a consistent approach to recycling and introduce deposit return schemes also feature in the new Environment Bill. The government will create a new…
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Johnson’s actions speak louder than words

With there being little of substance to chew on in his first speech as the country’s PM, perhaps the key to understanding Boris Johnson’s intentions lies not in his rhetoric but in his appointments, writes Nick Hughes A Great British eccentric whose unique brand of chutzpah will secure a golden future for his country? Or…
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Footprint Investigation: Parliament burnt by compostable pledge

A Footprint investigation has discovered that large volumes of new compostable packaging from the Houses of Parliament are being sent for incineration due to shortcomings in the waste supply chain. By Nick Hughes. More than a year after UK Parliament first announced plans to switch to new compostable packaging, Footprint can reveal that none of…
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Government warned off “dangerous” allergen regulations

Better communication between businesses and customers is the most effective way to tackle allergen-related issues, said UKHospitality in its response to the government’s consultation on new regulations. Some of the options under consideration are “potentially dangerous” and impractical, the organisation warned. Defra has proposed an overhaul of food allergen information laws. This followed the tragic…
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Analysis: Why the silence from the high-street health alliance?

Brexit is weighing heavy on the industry – but is that why the ambitious project is keeping quiet on its first year’s progress? Brexit is all-consuming. So say 32 food and drink trade associations which claimed last week their members have neither “the physical resources nor organisational bandwidth” to deal with policy matters unrelated to…
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Political Print: on the brink of Brexit crisis

MPs’ rejection of May’s EU deal leaves the food industry facing disaster with time running out. By Nick Hughes. In the lead-up to Tuesday’s momentous vote businesses were united by one wish: to have certainty about the Brexit endgame. After the crushing rejection by MPs of Theresa May’s deal, the only certainty now is that…
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Foodservice managers are looking on the bright side of Brexit

With just four months to go until the UK-EU divorce, there was every chance that the latest UKHospitality report would be a grim read. But that’s not the case, says David Burrows. It’s hard to find good news these days. As one Guardian commentator noted recently: we now live in dark, depressing, God-awful times ……
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