That Trade Deal with the USA


Hon. Richard Drax MP

House of Commons



29 July 2017

Dear Mr Drax

The Trade Deal with the USA

I wish to express my grave concerns over the secret talks Liam Fox is having with the US administration over a possible trade deal. My chief concerns are over food safety and food security but I have others.

As regards Chlorine washed chicken, it seems to be a practice to make up for the lack of proper hygiene. There are more serious complaints. American livestock practices include:

  • Feeding cattle with genetically modified growth promoting hormones, one of which has been found to promote breast cancer cell growth, and may even contribute to early onset of puberty.

  • Feeding cattle with sub-therapeutic doses of antibiotic (to promote growth) , which is likely to cause antibiotic resistant bacteria to spread to humans.

  • Dosing chickens with antihistamines and even sometimes ketamine and steroids.

It should be remembered that Trump wants to deregulate further. The US unlike the EU does not apply the precautionary principle. What studies has her Majesty’s Government carried out to assess these dangers?

Americans are renowned for being tough negotiators and must realise we are in a weak position being in a hurry. I see very little chance of the UK deriving any benefit from such a deal. Our food standards will decline, our farmers will find it hard to compete, our economic base will be further narrowed and our balance of payments will suffer.

You may be able to feed yourself by growing your own food or buying organic. Organic food production will become much more expensive due to contamination of one sort or another and so few will be able to afford it.

Our landscape is largely a managed one; farmers play an important part in this. With the decline in farming much land will become wild. In some cases this might be good but in others it will not. Furthermore our economic position is likely to become so dire that we will have to withdraw from some trade agreements and once again produce our own food. However we will have lost the expertise and it will take decades to replace it.

The British state is built on sand both economically and morally. The current government seems bent on washing away the foundations.

yours sincerely

David Smith