Daily Express | UK News By Louise Barnett
Milk, meat and egg prices could rocket by 20 per cent because of foreign farmers growing more GM crops, experts warned yesterday.
UK animal feed, which is made mainly from soya, could quadruple in price within two years if growers in Brazil and Argentina produce more genetically modified soya, which is banned in Europe, according to government research.
Non-GM soya would rocket in price, making animal and poultry feed more expensive and ramping up UK meat and poultry costs by around a fifth. Farmers are worried they face unfair competition from countries which allow GM crops.
The National Farmers’ Union director of policy Martin Haworth warned: “There is a very real danger that livestock producers, both here and across the EU, will be unable to compete.”
The GM Crops And Foods report has been published jointly by the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs and the Food Standards Agency. It says Britain’s livestock farms rely on Brazil and Argentina for 90 per cent of imported soya used in feed for poultry, cattle and pigs.
Defra’s research outlines a worst-case scenario in which British farmers cannot buy soya from either Argentina or Brazil if they only grow GM crops – the use of which is banned here.
Feed costs would soar by 300 per cent, while UK pork and poultry production would plunge by up to 68 per cent. As a result, the report suggests, shop prices for meat and poultry would jump by up to 20 per cent.