US Trade Representative said it was ‘concerned’ about EU measures for ‘food safety and protecting human, animal, or plant life or health’
Insect-filled chocolates, rat hair-infested noodles, and orange juice containing maggots are just some of the “horrors” UK consumers could be forced to accept if post-Brexit Britain signs a wide-ranging trade deal with the USA.
In the US, producers adhere to a “Defects Levels Handbook,” which sets out the maximum number of foreign bodies like maggots, insect fragments and mould that can be in food products before they are put on the market.
For example, US producers are allowed to include up to 30 insect fragments in a 100g jar of peanut butter; as well as 11 rodent hairs in a 25g container of paprika; or 3mg of mammalian excreta (typically rat or mouse excrement) per each pound of ginger.
In the EU there are no allowable limits for foreign bodies in food products.
MPs told Business Insider they are worried that a UK-US trade deal designed by Brexiteers could open the floodgates to contaminated food.
“Clearly, The Tories have some very unpleasant surprises for UK dinner tables if they have their way with a fast-track trade deal with the United States,” Bill Esterson, the shadow trade minister, said.
“We know the Tories are keen on chlorine-washed chicken and hormone-fed beef but they surely cannot expect that the British public will be happy to swallow these other horrors.”
Caroline Lucas, ex-leader of the Green party and supporter of the People's Vote campaign, added: “This is the gruesome reality of the US trade deal being touted by Liam Fox as one of the great benefits of leaving the EU.
“Under the government's disastrous Brexit, we will finally be free to eat all the maggot-ridden food we like. No-one voted for a Brexit that waters down the safety and hygiene of our food - but that's what the government is pursuing.”
'The US actively dislikes many existing EU measures'
Trade secretary Liam Fox has denied the UK will lower its food standards after Brexit, but has not ruled out changing standards in order to strike new trade deals with countries around the world.