The Dec. 31 Brexit transition deadline looms as the United Kingdom and the European Union get set to officially part ways. Regardless of the outcome, the withdrawal agreement between the UK and the EU will have a sizable impact on the agricultural trade between the two, with considerable disruption expected on the UK side. The UK has long relied on the EU for large volumes of fresh fruit and vegetables, as well as an assortment of grains, oils, and meat products.
Leaving the European Union means higher costs for UK companies under any circumstances, but departing without a new arrangement on trade could be catastrophic. It would leave Britain’s trade with EU-member states on World Trade Organization terms, subjecting the movement of goods and services to tariffs and other new barriers.
Gro data shows the UK imported 2.8 million tonnes of vegetables in 2019 (of which 64% originated from the EU-27), 2 million tonnes of cereals (50% from the EU), and 1.5 million tonnes of fruit (63% from the EU).
While the nation imports sizable quantities of agricultural products, the EU market is also an important source of income for British farmers. The UK exported 2.7 million tonnes of cereals, mostly barley and wheat, to the EU in 2019.
A “no deal” outcome would likely result in an economic hit for both sides, disruption at UK-EU border points and political acrimony. It would also spur a weakening of the pound, making imports more expensive.
While much will change between now and Dec. 31, the many datasets in Gro can help you garner a better understanding of the UK-EU trade relationship and assess the impact of the range of outcomes ahead.
This insight was powered by the Gro platform, which enables better and faster decisions about factors affecting the entire global agricultural ecosystem. Gro organizes over 40,000 datasets from sources around the world into a unified ontology, which allows users to derive valuable insights such as this one. You can explore the data available on Gro with a free account, or please get in touch if you would like to learn more about a specific crop, region, or business issue.