Transparency will be key to the success of the much fought-for Trade and Agriculture Commission once it becomes a statutory body.
That was the message from the commission’s chairman, Tim Smith, speaking on the opening day of NFU Scotland’s virtual annual conference yesterday.
Mr Smith said the commission will soon deliver its report to the UK Government on how best to protect the interests of farmers and consumers in any post-Brexit trade deals.
It will then become a statutory body to scrutinise future trade deals, following intense lobbying from farm leaders.
“It has been a hard-fought political battle for the statutory body that will replace us,” said Mr Smith.
“And that will lead to quite challenging discussions about who should be included.”
He added: “In transparency is where it will find its strength; the challenge for government is to make the most use of it.”
He said the commission’s report would outline ways to create a “fair and safe food and farming system for all” and he assured farmers its recommendations would focus on preventing a race to the bottom.
“We want no backsliding on standards and no turning back the clock on standards,” added Mr Smith.