Scotland’s red meat industry has already lost £7.3 million since Boris Johnson’s disastrous Brexit deal came into force on 01 January 2021.
According to the Scottish Association of Meat Wholesalers (SMAW), exports to the European mainland have been negatively impacted for various reasons, including the absence of electronic tracing networks, new paperwork, varying interpretations of the new rules and higher certification costs.
The SMAW further states that in, January 2021, exports fell by 25% compared to January 2020.
In January and February combined, Scottish businesses saw an estimated reduction in beef and lamb exports of around £4.7 million and £2.6 million respectively.
SNP candidate for Cunninghame North, Kenneth Gibson, said:
“This significant drop in our high-quality meat exports is as worrying as it is unsurprising.
“Scotland voted overwhelmingly to remain in the European Union and its Single Market, which is the second-largest consumer market in the world and has greatly benefited businesses in North Ayrshire and across Scotland.
“For many years, the SNP has tried to convince the Tories at Westminster not to threaten our place in the Single Market, but Scotland’s needs fell on deaf ears.
“It is now undeniable that Boris Johnson’s hard Brexit in the middle of a pandemic has been a disaster for Scotland and with each day that passes, it becomes clearer that Scotland’s future should be in Scotland’s hands.
“The only way to protect Scotland's economy, secure our place in Europe, and build a strong, fair and green recovery is to become an independent country in a post-pandemic referendum.”