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U.K. won’t Budge on Agriculture in Upcoming Negotiations with the U.S.

The United Kingdom officially published its objectives for the upcoming trade negotiations with the U.S. 

The announcement included an uncompromising stand on agriculture and food standards, two big sticking points that have slowed momentum for talks getting underway. 

Politico says the U.K. won’t compromise on its “high environmental protection, animal welfare, and food standards,” along with the drug pricing provisions that are all central to the negotiations. 

U.S. agriculture and trade officials had hoped that the U.K. would loosen up some of their strictest requirements after officially leaving the European Union in January. 

The National Association of State Departments of Agriculture says it’s all for high standards for food safety and animal welfare and says U.S. producers already do so. 

NASDA CEO Barb Glenn says, “American farmers and ranchers produce the safest and highest-quality food that’s enjoyed by consumers across the world. We’re also doing it with fewer resources than ever.” 

U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer says the two biggest sticking points, which are agriculture and health care, shouldn’t stand in the way of reaching a deal in 2020.

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