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Remote Division Result: Amendment 39

Volume 676: debated on Wednesday 13 May 2020

Third Reading

Queen’s consent signified.

I beg to move, That the Bill be now read the Third time.

I would like to acknowledge the work that has got us to this point. In particular, I would like to thank DEFRA officials, those who provided evidence and especially those Members who served on the Bill Committee. I am conscious that the restricted nature of the hybrid Parliament means that many of those Committee members have found it difficult to contribute to this stage of proceedings, but they all contributed comprehensively during earlier stages, and the points they raised have been heard.

The Government stood on a manifesto commitment to guarantee the current annual budget for farmers in every year of the new Parliament. Our farmers need stability, certainty and a smooth seven-year transition to adapt to our new policy of public money for public goods, and the Bill provides for that.

This is the second outing of this Bill. I was involved in the last Parliament at Committee stage for the first. We have made a number of changes since then, including strengthening parliamentary scrutiny with the requirement for a multi-annual plan; a strengthened duty around food security, with five-yearly reviews of food security; and a new clause on the importance of food production. Finally, I am conscious that animal welfare has been a big feature of the debate. The Government have a manifesto commitment that in all trade deals, they will not compromise on our high environmental protection, animal welfare and food standards.

Labour will not allow farmers to go out of business to secure a trade deal with Donald Trump. It is unusual for any party to vote against Third Reading of a Bill, but we will vote against this Bill because the issue of farm standards for our food is not a technical one; it is fundamental to what kind of country we are. We support high standards for our British farmers, and we demand that all food imported into our country after our Brexit transition period ends adheres to those same high standards that our British farmers have to adhere to.

Two hours and fifteen minutes having elapsed since the resumption of proceedings on consideration, the debate was interrupted (Order, this day).

Before I put the Question, I confirm that my final determination is that the Question should be decided by remote Division. There is therefore no need for me to collect the voices or for Members present in the Chamber to shout Aye or No.

Question put forthwith (Order, this day), That the Bill be now read the Third time.

The House proceeded to a remote Division.