The government has insisted it "will not compromise on our standards" following reports it was considering allowing chlorinated chicken and hormone-fed beef to be imported from the US to secure a trade deal.
As part of trade negotiations with the US, a proposal was understood to have been put forward that would allow foods produced using techniques banned in Britain to be imported, but subjected to higher tariffs.
Responding to the reports Liz Truss, secretary of state for international trade, and George Eustice, environment secretary, co-signed a letter, which insisted: "We remain firmly committed to upholding our high environmental, food safety and animal welfare standards outside the EU and the EU Withdrawal Act will transfer all existing EU food safety provisions, including existing EU food safety provisions, including existing import requirements on to the UK statute book."
The provisions that will be transferred include bans on the use of artificial growth hormones and the use of anything other than potable water to decontaminate poultry carcasses; the letter continues to say that any changes to this legislation would need to be bought before government.
Washing chicken in chlorine to remove bacteria is banned across the European Union, due to concerns that such measures could be used to compensate for poor hygiene and welfare standards at other stages of production.