The industry is concerned with how the U.K.’s entry into the CPTPP could affect Canadian producers
By Diego Flammini
Three national organizations representing the Canadian livestock and meat industries launched a new campaign to raise awareness about how Canadian producers are being treated unfairly in a trade deal.
The Canadian Cattle Association, Canadian Meat Council and National Cattle Feeders’ Association are behind the Say No to a Bad Deal campaign related to the U.K.’s accession into the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) and how this may affect Canadian producers.
“Canadian meat is currently severely disadvantaged in the interim agreement with the UK as technical, non-tariff trade barriers have resulted in Canada being unable to access the UK market, while the UK enjoys unfettered access into the Canadian market,” the organizations said in a Sept. 12 statement.
The main hurdle is Britain’s refusal to accept some Canadian production practices.
These include the use of growth hormones and the use of antimicrobial livestock carcass washes in processing facilities.
And Britain appears steadfast in its approach.
“We have said from the outset that we do have some things in place around (sanitary and phytosanitary measures), where we’re not willing to compromise,” British High Commissioner Susannah Goshko told The Canadian Press in April.
Despite these challenges, and the power to veto new CPTPP members, Canada supported Britain’s accession into the agreement in July.
This means British meat products will have access to Canada, but not vice versa.
“The proposed agreement will see the UK exporting over $50 million of their meat producers into the Canadian market, while Canada will be unable to export any meat products into their market,” the organizations said.
Visiting the campaign’s website allows visitors to email their Members of Parliament to voice support for the Canadian livestock sectors.
With Parliament set to resume next week, this is a key issue for the ag industry.
Should the federal government fail to make progress on this issue, the livestock sector expects Ottawa to be there for them in another way.
“We are asking Parliament to ensure producers and processors are fairly compensated for the damage and losses that will result,” the Sept. 12 statement says.