EU will keep restrictions on hormones and growth promoters under TTIP – Minister

The EU will keep its restrictions on hormones and growth promoters in livestock farming in the proposed US and EU trade deal, according to the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovtion Richard Bruton.

According to Bruton, the EU Commission has consistently stated that the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) will not force the EU to change its rules on hormone-treated meat.

“This means that no product will be allowed in the EU market that does not comply with the EU’s high standards,” he said.

Also speaking on the proposed Trade Deal recently the Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney said in the negotiations for agreement on a Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, a key issue for him is to ensure that the principle of equivalence will continue to apply so that even where food production processes in the EU and US are not identical they will provide equivalent guarantees regarding the standards of production.

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“This principle is already enshrined under the World Trade Organisation Agreement and I am pleased to report that it is also recognised by both sides in the EU/US negotiations as the basis for the TTIP agreement.

“Equally it is important that both the EU and United States retain the policy space to restrict certain practices and processes on social and ethical grounds and this is also recognised, in principle, by both sides,” he said.

Minister Coveney said that the negotiations are at a relatively early stage and it is difficult to predict the final shape of an agreement at this point.

Nevertheless, he said he has made it clear to the EU Commission, which negotiates on our behalf, that the principle of equivalence, and the right of reservation on policy grounds, must both be respected in the negotiations.

“This is particularly relevant in relation to the use of hormones in meat production.

“The EU Commission has made it clear that it will not allow the importation of hormone treated meat into the EU and this is well understood by the US side.”

He added that in these circumstances, he does not anticipate that the TTIP agreement will have any impact on food standards within the state.

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