‘Copied and pasted EU rules’ UK business owner erupts at Brexit red tape thwarting sales

Brexit: business owner slams rule change on edible insects

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The co-founder of a British company looking to sell insect-based snacks has blasted regulations that have been imposed on the sector since the UK left the European Union. Tiziana Di Constanzo, from Horizon Edible Insects, has suggested that British officials have simply “copy and pasted” EU rules after Brexit.


Ms Di Constanzo told GB News: “I brought some insects for you to have a look at but unfortunately I can’t let you try them because I will be committing a crime.”

“So basically the insects have been sold in the UK since…but some company has been trading for decades,” she continued.

“Then Brexit came in overnight on the first of January, we weren’t notified just by chance, the industry found out that all the progress that had been made in Europe with regards to edible insects have been basically scrapped by the Food Standards Agency, and all companies have to apply for this novel food authorization process.

Ms Di Constanzo added: “Instead of taking Brexit as an opportunity to break away from the red tape again they instead have sort of copied pasted the rules and they have done a bad copy paste because they have not introduced any transitional measures which will ensure business continuity.

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It comes after disagreements over Brexit trade rules in Northern Ireland boiled over after Stormont’s Agriculture Minister ordered a halt to agri-food checks at Northern Irish ports.

Ireland’s Foreign Affairs Minister Simon Coveney branded the decision to halt Northern Ireland Protocol checks as a “breach of international law”.

DUP minister Edwin Poots said last Wednesday evening that he had ordered officials to end the checks by midnight.

Mr Poot’s party leader Sir Jeffrey Donaldson said the DUP had focused minds on tackling issues with the Northern Ireland Protocol.

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Sir Jeffrey said the protocol “represents an existential threat to the future of Northern Ireland’s place within the Union”.

“We have reminded the Government of their promise in the New Decade, New Approach agreement to protect Northern Ireland’s place within the UK internal market,” he said.

“This commitment was the basis upon which we re-entered the Executive in early 2020 and have participated in the political institutions since then.

“To date, this commitment has not been honoured by the UK Government.”

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Ireland’s Foreign Affairs Minister Simon Coveney branded the decision to halt Northern Ireland Protocol checks as a “breach of international law”.

Speaking in the upper house of the Irish parliament, Mr Coveney said: “If a political decision is taken by a minister in Northern Ireland to stop all checks in ports on goods coming across the Irish Sea, coming into Northern Ireland, that is effectively a breach of international law. And I would remind everybody that the protocol is part of an international agreement.

“It was agreed and ratified by the UK and the EU. And its implementation is not only part of an international treaty, but it is part of international law and so to deliberately frustrate obligations under that treaty I think would be a very serious matter indeed.

“It’s essentially playing politics with legal obligations. And I certainly hope that it doesn’t happen, as has been threatened.”

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