Cedric Porter summarises how a no-deal Brexit will leave the seed and chemical supply chain.
Existing UK plant variety rights up to March 29, 2019 would continue to be recognised by the EU. Rights that have been applied for but not granted before March 29 2019 would need to be applied for again through the UK’s Animal & Plant Health Agency (APHA).
New varieties would need to be applied for through the UK and EU systems if breeders want them to be sold in both territories, rather than the single application made through the EU now.
Varieties solely registered through the UK’s National Listing system would not be marketable in the EU.
A stand-alone UK plant protection product regime would be established in the event of a no-deal.
Current EU law would be absorbed into UK law, with only technical changes made in the short-term to ensure products could continue to be sold in the UK. All current substance approvals, authorisations and Minimum Residue Levels would remain valid in the UK. Over time, there could be divergence between the UK and the EU. The Health and Safety Executive will remain the UK’s national regulator.
The UK would fall out of the EU’s plant passport scheme if there was a no-deal Brexit. This would mean companies exporting plant material to the EU would be treated as a third country supplier and would need a phytosanitary certificate. The UK has said it will regard most imported plant material from the EU as low risk and allow it to enter the country freely.
The UK will no longer be a member of the European Chemicals Agency in the event of a no-deal Brexit. The agency evaluates and registers chemicals for use in the EU. The UK’s EU Withdrawal would bring existing EU chemical regulations into UK law, while the UK would build a system to carry out similar functions of the agency in the UK.
UK fertiliser law is already separate from the EU legal framework, so the manufacture and marketing of fertiliser in the UK would remain largely unchanged after Brexit. ‘CE’ marked fertiliser will still be able to be sold after Brexit, perhaps for up to two years in its current form. After that it would have to carry a ‘UK’ fertiliser label and comply with the current domestic regime.