Chlorinated Chickens Are Clucking Up A US-UK Trade Deal

The U.K. is debating whether to allow in chlorine-treated U.S. chickens as part of a post-Brexit trade deal.
Posted at 6:38 PM, Jul 26, 2017

After Brexit, the U.K. wants a new trade deal with the U.S.

During a meeting with U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May, President Donald Trump said: "We're working on a trade deal which will be ... a very powerful deal, great for both countries."

But it's having trouble figuring out how chlorinated the chickens should be.

See, U.S. regulations let chicken processors dip chicken carcasses in a mildly chlorinated solution to kill bacteria, which is a fact you have to live with forever now.

The process isn't considered a huge health risk, but E.U. regulations still ban the sale of chlorinated chicken. And some in the U.K. aren't comfortable with loosening those restrictions and letting U.S. chickens be sold in the U.K.

U.K. International Trade Secretary Liam Fox spent days downplaying the issue — only for Environment Secretary Michael Gove to come out and state that the U.K. wouldn't allow chlorinated chickens in a U.S. trade deal.

And the whole chlorine kerfuffle is just one issue trade negotiators will have to work through. The U.S. has plenty of other food standards that the U.K. might balk at.