Lap of honour for winning a corner

Dear Editor,

Reading my MP Kit Malthouse’s letter on July 1 put me in mind of the football team that did a lap of honour when they won a corner.

He describes a deal with a modest sized country on the far side of the globe as a “major” agreement. 

He uses typical Johnson-ish extravagant language like tariffs “slashed”, “boosting” industries and “huge opportunities”. 

Analysis by those who understand these matters put the benefit to our GDP as being extremely modest.

In the meantime, his Government has presided over a horrific Covid death rate and a massive blow to our children’s education. 

A combination of Covid and a wafer-thin Brexit deal have resulted in the UK having the worst economic performance of the G7 countries.

A healthy, prosperous, and well-educated country doesn’t result from boastful words. 

Mr Malthouse should realise this; I doubt Boris Johnson ever will.

Philip Nield, Winchester Street, Overton

Farmers won’t back the new deal

Dear Editor, 

It is unlikely that our farmers will support Kit Malthouse MP (letter, July 1) over the new trade deal with Australia, despite his clear enthusiasm for it. 

This deal will allow Australia virtually unlimited imports to Britain, without tariffs, and will make the UK market extremely attractive for their beef and sheep farmers. 

Back British Farming is extremely concerned that it may become impossible for our family farms to compete. 

Australia is the biggest exporter of beef (including hormone-fed) in the world, often with 50,000 cattle on one farm. 

Their systems are very different from the UK’s grass-fed systems. 

Likewise, their production methods: a cow can be transported for two days, with no rest break and no water - illegal in the UK with our high animal welfare and environmental standards.  

Their lamb can be subjected to ‘mulesing – removing skin from a lamb’s rear without anaesthetic to avoid ‘fly strike’ – again, illegal in the UK. 

Mr Johnson’s government promised us that our farming would be protected. 

The Australia deal suggests the contrary. 

Farmers are only asking for a level playing field, something they were guaranteed under the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy before Brexit. 

Yet the Government continues to ignore all the warnings of a devastating long-term impact on our farms. 

‘Good news’ and ‘huge opportunities’ for our farmers, Mr Malthouse?

Name and address supplied

Open letter to Kit Malthouse

Dear Kit Malthouse,

The UK, a major contributor to the world’s plastic crisis, produces more plastic waste per person than any other country except the USA.

UK’s recycling system isn’t working. 

I am concerned by the Government’s complacent attitude to address the problem. 

Our waste is overwhelming other countries’ recycling systems causing serious harm to their citizens and environment.

Greenpeace’s new evidence of illegal dumping and burning of UK plastic waste in Turkey, demonstrates this. Turkey is the latest country to ban the import of most plastic waste, and the ban came into force on July 2, 2021.

The UK government needs to urgently ban exports to other countries, including to members of the OECD, to end dumping plastic waste that passes for recycling.

The UK government needs to drastically cut the amount of plastic produced. Reducing single-use plastics by 50 per cent by 2025 allows the UK to end waste exports, therefore, less plastic going into incineration and landfill. 

The government must commit to a target of 50 per cent reduction in single-use plastic by 2025, with a clear plan for delivering it.

We need urgent action, not words, to end the plastic crisis. Will you sign the MP pledge to end plastic pollution, and will you write to the Environment Secretary?

Jeannette Schael, Crookham Close, Tadley