Jim Hope asks "What made our MP change his mind?" ( Letters November 12 )

The government has blocked the enshrining of food standards in the Agriculture Bill currently proceeding through parliament. It has instead agreed to set up a statuary Trade and Agriculture Commission(TAC). This body will assess any future trade agreement and offer advice to the government as it passes through parliament - all in three weeks. The government could of course ignore that advice and the advice itself could be to ignore our current standards. The Chairman of the TAC said recently that up to a fifth of their recommendations would not be unanimous so could easily be ignored. That is no small wonder when one of the members of the TAC is Shanker Singham an arch Brexiteer who is philosophically opposed to food standards because he thinks they are protectionist. We must also not forget that another Brexiteer - Jacob Rees Mogg desires a hard Brexit because it would bring "cheaper food, clothing and footwear".

So we have no legal protections on imported food, a review body with insufficient time to actually review, staffed with government appointees and hard Brexiteers that can be ignored by a Brexit government.

Call me old fashioned but there is almost nothing more important than the safety of the food we eat. This government refuses to legislate for that and has set up a toothless quango to buy off parliament.

Perhaps Mr Smith has not changed his mind at all.

Anthony Bradley


Long Preston