One more part of Project Fear is this insistence that our current trade arrangements are the only arrangements possible. Even, that without Nanny EU to hold our hand we’ll be unable to import things. Which is really rather odd as the European Union limits what we may import and from where. It doesn’t allow it, doesn’t encourage it, it prevents it. So quite how not being limited by the EU will mean less food for us is, well, it’s difficult to understand, isn’t it? Unless they’re all just deliberately lying to us.
Here’s What British People Would Eat in a Worst-Case Brexit
If trade routes really were to shut down, a hypothetical U.K. diet would leave a lot to be desired.
It’s not true that there’s even a connection between those two lines. By worst case here they mean no deal. OK, fine, that means that we’ve not got deals with other countries as to the terms under which they’ll allow our exports to become imports into their countries. Well, no terms other than WTO ones, the way some vast amount of international trade is already carried on.
What’s that got to do with the rules we apply to things we want to import? Those rules are – once we leave for the EU currently claims sole competence here – whatever we want them to be. We can indeed have the no rules stuff we did in 1846 when we abolished the Corn Laws. Given that the abolition made us all very much richer we should too. But it does need to be said yet again that this is up to us. We get to decide this, not them:
No more avocado toast or banana smoothies, and forget about shaving fresh Parmesan on your pasta. Instead, get used to milk at every meal, bread for days, lamb chops, and peas. Lots and lots of peas. Home-grown meals more akin to an industrial-age diet are what Britons could be eating if the U.K. leaves the European Union without a deal that sets up basic trading relations with other countries. The U.K. relies heavily on imports and has been such a hotbed of agricultural trade for centuries that it’s easy to forget what the British palate would look like in a world where food trade grinds to a halt.
But there’s no reason why a no deal exit should mean we can’t import whatever food we want. As above, in fact, given that we’ll be free of the EU restrictions on what we may import from where and whom we’ll be even more open to the tasty glories of the world’s farms.
There’d be fewer greens, and what remains will be more vulnerable to seasonal harvests. Fresh produce would be among the most affected, as the U.K. imports most of its fruit and about half its vegetables. We’d each get about four pounds of strawberries and half a pound of raspberries a year from British farms, with nary a banana. Avocado toast is off the menu, too. The country produces plenty of peas (its best-selling veggie), and carrots and beets are available most months. Broccoli would be on the shelves for just half the year. Save the tomatoes for special occasions: U.K. farmers produce only a fifth of the tomatoes sold in the country throughout the year, and up to a half in the summer, according to the British Tomato Grower’s Association.
Still, there is one advantage to this screed. Think on what the Greens keep telling us. We should eat only local food. All this international trade in the stuff is very bad indeed.
That’s what the British diet would look like if they got their way, isn’t it?