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Food and Water: Rationing

Question for Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

UIN HL17732, tabled on 4 September 2019

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have for rationing to prevent potential food and water shortages post Brexit.

Answered on

9 September 2019

This answer is a correction from the original answer.

Defra is the lead Government department for food and water in Her Majesty’s Government and these sectors are two of the 13 Critical National Infrastructure Sectors in the UK. The food and water sectors are making detailed preparations for all eventualities as we prepare to leave the EU, and rationing will not be implemented.

The UK’s high degree of food security is built on access to a range of sources including strong domestic production and imports from other countries. This will continue to be the case when we leave the EU whatever the circumstances. The UK Government has well established ways of working with the food industry. Defra Ministers and officials meet regularly with the food industry, who are experienced in dealing with scenarios that can affect food supply, to support contingency planning by the industry as we prepare to leave the EU.

We are confident that no deal will not have an impact on water supply. We have been working closely with water companies, chemical suppliers, regulators and the devolved administrations on contingency planning, and companies are well advanced in their preparations to make sure they can meet their statutory responsibility to maintain services. It will be the case that our water will continue to be safe and of the same quality customers expect when we leave the EU.

The food and water sectors are engaged with Local Resilience Forums to ensure effective delivery of these sectors at the local level.

Original answer

It has not proved possible to respond to this question in the time available before Prorogation. Ministers will correspond directly with the Member.