EU-US trade deal: A bumper crop for "big food"?

How fair and sustainable food and farming could be permanently damaged by a transatlantic trade deal

By Karen Hansen-Kuhn   Mute Schimpf
Published October 9, 2013

AgribusinessFoodFree trade agreements

Used under creative commons license from Port of San Diego.

The drive for "regulatory coherence" in the transatlantic trade talks risks pushing food and farming standards down in the U.S. and EU. Big food and biotech companies are pushing to eliminate EU restrictions on genetically modified (GM) foods and food additives, challenge food labelling laws which they think are barriers to trade, and undermine the EU’s use of the "precautionary principle" in setting food safety standards. The trade talks could also threaten local food schemes in the U.S. and EU that seek to direct public spending towards healthier, sustainably produced school meals. Friends of the Earth Europe and the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP) reject any attempt to deregulate polluting industries, harmonize safety or product standards downwards, or limit future legislation at the national, state or local level to rebuild food and farming systems.

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