DEFRA’s no-deal preparations ‘over-optimistic’, says parliamentary committee

A House of Commons committee has accused DEFRA of being over-optimistic in its plans to secure adequate food supplies if the UK crashes out of the EU without a deal.

While the department has denied that long delays at the UK’s borders would lead to food shortages, the Public Accounts Committee has said in a new report it is “unconvinced” that DEFRA is “prepared for the practical challenges that no deal would bring, particularly in managing the flow of priority goods”.

Analysis cited by the report indicates that for channel crossings from France to Dover and Folkestone the flow of freight could shrink by up to 87% of normal levels, with up to six months of disruption expected if no deal is secured.

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