The international trade secretary vowed to protect food quality after withdrawal from the EU – but insisted the controversy about washing poultry in chlorine was purely an “animal welfare” issue.
“There’s been no argument about food safety on chlorine-washed chicken – it’s been an argument about animal welfare,” he told an event.
“So, it’s not been about food standards per se, so that’s a slightly different debate and much more difficult to quantify because the legal definitions about it at the WTO are much less.”
The comments came as Dr Fox said MPs voting down the withdrawal agreement bill would be setting the UK on a path to either “revocation of Article 50 or leaving without a deal”.
“I think MPs will need to look and see whether they want to continue down a path that inexorably, I think, takes us to revocation of Article 50 or leaving without a deal,” he told the Institute for Government think-tank.
MPs should “ask whether that is the best course, democratically or economically, for the UK,” Dr Fox said, adding: “MPs will have to face that decision.”