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A new report released by the British Retail Consortium has called on the Government to negotiate a zero-tariff deal to avoid food prices rising for consumers.
The organisation’s report, Why Tariffs are Bad News for UK Consumers, highlights that with no trade deal agreed, the industry would be unable to absorb the additional costs, leading to higher food costs for UK shoppers from the 31st January 2021.
Under the new tariff schedule, published in May, the average tariff on food from the EU would be over 20%, which includes 48% on beef mince and 57% on Cheddar cheese.
The trade body warns that time is running out to agree a deal that avoids tariffs and minimises the impact of non-tariff barriers.
Andrew Opie, director of food & sustainability at the British Retail Consortium, said, “Without a tariff-free deal with the EU, the public will see higher prices in supermarkets from next year, squeezing millions of families already impacted by the current economic downturn. This is not the fair deal that consumers were promised.
“Many UK shoppers experienced disruption in the run up to lockdown; without a deal, the public may face an even bigger challenge at the end of the Transition period. With the clock ticking down to 31st December, the Government must put consumers first and agree a deal that avoids tariffs and minimises the impact of non-tariff barriers. This would prevent harm to shoppers, retailers and the wider economy.”
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