Exports of food and drink to the EU have suffered a “disastrous” decline in the first half of the year because of Brexit trade barriers, with sales of beef and cheese hit hardest.

Food and Drink Federation (FDF) producers lost £2bn in sales, a dent in revenue that could not be compensated for by the increased sales in the same period to non-EU countries including China and Australia.

Dominic Goudie, head of international trade at the FDF, said: “The return to growth in exports to non-EU markets is welcome news, but it doesn’t make up for the disastrous loss of

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