Farmers who voted to leave the European Union have admitted Brexit will put many in the industry out of business.
One farmer told Byline TV that although he is a lifelong Tory voter, it would be “very, very unlikely” that he would vote for them again.
Another Brexiteer farmer announced “a lot of farmers will go under”.
“It’s just inevitable, it’s going to be a big challenge,” he added.
Australia trade deal
He said the government’s trade agreement with Australia needs to be done in such a way that all farmers are “playing off the same level playing field”. But he said the deal is an ‘unquestionable threat’.
He thinks the government “does not listen to anybody”, be it companies or farmers. “Personally, I think all they are doing is lining their own pocket,” he said.
But he said he would still vote to leave the European Union again “for the simple reason that at some point it will sort itself out”.
“I voted leave and it destroyed my business. But I would do it again because I can’t stand the EU”— Byline TV (@BylineTV) June 21, 2021
Farmers react to Brexit pic.twitter.com/ch01vI4dJD
Another farmer stated: “I can’t believe as a life-long Conservative voter, I stand at the moment thinking I would be very, very unlikely to vote Conservative again at the moment.”
“Brexiteers said this would a great new world and we would be able to export all over the world. We just feel lied to basically.”
He added: “I don’t understand why they are so keen to throw all sorts of industries under the bus.”
“We are not anti competition, we are anti being shafted.”
A third farmer hoped Brexit would provide a “big change in the way that people would buy from Britain again.
“But we’ve been sailed down the river as farmers,” she reflected.
She now thinks farmers will be brushed aside because their industry is now “not that important”.
British public ‘blindfolded’ on post-Brexit trade deals
In the light of UK government’s trade deal with Australia, Wiltshire farmer Liz Webster told TLE most Brits don’t want lower food standards, but that Australia has one of the “worst standards”.
Animals are injected with antibiotics because they are kept in “filthy”environments, which leads to antibiotics resistance in humans, according to her. “If they [people] get an infection in a few years, it could get them killed,” she said.
She added: “They are trying to blindfold the British public by using this environmentalism and then they are importing food which has been produced under very low standards and is not environmentally friendly.
“There will be some good farming but it will only be the rich who will be able to afford it. We will have to eat bad food.
“I don’t think they kept their promises before Brexit, they promised things to all men. It’s a huge betrayal.”
“Fundamentally liberalising agreement”
A government spokesperson told TLE at the time that the Australia deal delivers for the UK and shows what the country can achieve “as a sovereign trading nation.”
The spokesperson added: “It is a fundamentally liberalising agreement that removes tariffs on all British goods, opens new opportunities for our services providers and tech firms, and makes it easier for our people to travel and work together.
The spokesperson said the government is not compromising on UK’s high animal welfare and food safety standards – and will not allow imports that do not meet those standards, including hormone-treated beef.
The spokesperson also said future opportunities for UK farmers lie in Asia, which according to them has an increasing demand for beef and lamb, compared to European markets.