The Scottish government has said it would rather take Boris Johnson’s government to court than allow the imports of chlorinated chicken and hormone-injected beef into the country.
Westminster plans, according to the Financial Times, to seize the ‘UU internal market’ to create new post-Brexit powers that enforce new standards surrounding food, environment and animal welfare on both Scotland and Wales.
But the Scottish government has made clear it will refuse any powers imposed on it and would take the government to court if it attempts it.
Scotland, along with the rest of the UK, were under strict EU food standards to prevent the import of foods manufactured with questionable practices including chlorinated chicken and hormone-injected beef.
Michael Russell, Scotland’s cabinet secretary for constitutional affairs, told the newspaper it was willing to take the government to court over such plans.
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‘We do not accept that this is a legitimate way of operating within devolution,’ he said. ‘[If] they pass legislation . . . then we will have no intention of implementing that and they would have to essentially go to court to force its implementation.’ Both Aldi and Waitrose have refused to stock the products in their supermarkets, but there are concerns for the hospitality sector and hospitals where it may not be clearly identified.
The UK government said it was ‘committed to protecting the integrity of our internal market from any future barriers that could harm trade and destroy people’s livelihoods’. ’We have sought to agree a shared approach to the UK internal market with the devolved administrations. Unfortunately, however, the Scottish government voluntarily withdrew from this process over a year ago.’