The Horticultural Trades Association (HTA) has called for the Government to postpone the implementation of Border Control Posts by at least 12 months after the publication of the final Border Target Operating Model (BTOM), expected later this Summer.
In their feedback on the draft border proposals, the HTA highlights the potential negative impact on the horticultural sector, which will be the hardest hit if the Government proceeds without considering the industry’s specific needs.
Since 1 January 2021, Plant Health controls have been effectively implemented for plants, with import inspections taking place at the Place of Destination. This system has been successful for traders and nurseries. The HTA’s concern is that Border Control Posts may not be adequately prepared to handle the diverse and complex variety of loads that the horticultural sector imports from the EU. The Government needs to fully recognise the significance of the horticulture industry and provide assurance that any new trade system is thoroughly planned, tested, and communicated to businesses.