Meat was rotted in containers due to paperwork issues after Brexit.
The times reports that Tony Hale, executive director of DH Foods in London, said he had five containers of fresh pork in the port of Rotterdam which is now “completely lazy”.
He told the newspaper: “There is nothing we can do about it. We can’t sell it anymore, but we can’t even bring it back to this country because we don’t have the right forms for it. “
British meat exporters joined the fishermen yesterday Monday 18th January to speak out on the problems they have faced since Brexit.
A number of companies claim that their exports to Europe will be severely hampered by the post-Brexit bureaucracy.
Fresh fish and seafood exports have been severely affected by delays since the end of the UK’s transition period on December 31st.
The press association says new checks and papers have caused massive delays for the industry since the UK left the European Union.
Seafood producers are increasingly frustrated by the lack of government action.
Seafood shippers climbed onto streets near 10 Downing Street to respond to the problems they faced exporting seafood to the EU.
They warned that the Brexit fisheries deal would “tie them in knots” with paperwork.
Meat exporters have joined the complaints.
Hundreds of thousands of pounds of fresh meat products have been confiscated in European ports for lack of proper papers in the past two weeks, the Times said.
The pork stuck in Rotterdam was reportedly detained for two weeks because a veterinary certificate was incorrectly filled out.
Five trucks carrying 23 tons of freshly chilled meat worth £ 500,000 each were reportedly seized in Calais for three days.
Much of the meat must be destroyed as products such as pork and chicken must be processed within eight days of slaughter.
“The new customs system for meat products after Brexit is complicated, archaic and poorly implemented,” Nick Allen, executive director of the British Meat Processors Association, told the newspaper.
“If continental supermarkets are unable to deliver the products they need, that trade is simply lost as EU customers leave UK suppliers and source products from European processors.”
Figures in the meat industry suggest that many of the problems stem from the export health certificates that are required for all shipments.
These certificates are created by completing a product code online and printing out forms before being signed by a veterinarian.
However, the Times says many need to be changed by hand – because they are not specific enough.
Every change must also be stamped and initialed by the vet, it says on the paper.
Mr Allen said some shapes he had seen had up to 50 different stamps, adding even more confusion to the border.
A spokesman for DR Collin & Son of Eyemouth, who attended the protest near Downing Street, said time and training to put all relevant procedures in place by Jan 1st, 2021.
“However, all the training is wasted as the technology is out of date and cannot meet the demands placed on it – which in turn means that no products can leave the UK.
“These are not government-reported ‘teething troubles’ and the consequences of these problems will be catastrophic to the lives of fishermen, fishing towns and the entire mussel industry.”
Alasdair Hughson, Chairman of the Scottish Creel Fishermen’s Federation, said: “It is inevitable that the UK clam industry will want to make its voice heard loud and clear on this matter.
“After a year of struggling to survive and now faced with this situation, all of these companies have been accused of not filling in the forms correctly when they are all trying to follow the unclear and unclear government guidelines constantly changing …
“If this debacle doesn’t improve very soon, we’ll see a lot of established companies at the bottom of the line.”
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “I really sympathize and understand your frustrations and Covid has made things worse and the demand has not been what it was before the pandemic and that is one of the issues we are trying to address.”
“When companies have had trouble exporting through no fault of their own, when there is a real willing buyer, there is a £ 23 million fund to help.”