DEFRA Talks to Save Recycling Tax Descend Into Farce

DEFRA’s new law forcing companies to pay to recycle their own packaging – set to come into force in 2024 – is going down like a cup of cold sick with industry leaders. The “Extended Producer Responsibility”, which could see food bills shoot up by another £60 if the costs were passed on to shoppers, has already raised eyebrows since it was announced in 2021, and crisis talks this week haven’t exactly salvaged the policy.

More than 700 people across multiple sectors attended the online DEFRA-held Business Readiness Forum yesterday, only for the call to descend into chaos during a discussion with a department official, as dozens of participants trashed the plans and called for the entire thing to be binned. Guido’s got a hold of the chat transcript for the forum. Here’s an idea of how it went…

  • “Why is this going live if you’re not ready?!”
  • “Definately [sic] need a policy person on this forum otherwise it doesn’t have much value. I’ve learned nothing in 38 minutes”
  • “This seems to be totally unprepared and heading for a car crash… similar to other initiatives!”
  • “Feels like we need a separate DEFRA READINESS FORUM???”
  • “Is the picture of a cliff that keeps flashing up an indication that we’re all about to jump of [sic] one?”

One source told Guido “the chat was like a runaway Sky News ticker“, adding they “couldn’t keep up” with the amount of criticism and abuse. Therese Coffey already had emergency talks on the policy back in November. It doesn’t look like they helped much…

mdi-timer 13 January 2023 @ 12:05 13 Jan 2023 @ 12:05 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Labour’s Stale “Out of Touch” Attack Backfires

As much as Labour is claiming to be a break from our current sour politics, judging by today’s DEFRA questions Labour hasn’t abandoned their love of milking political point-scoring. After accusing Thérèse Coffey of being out of touch, Shadow Minister Jim McMahon then asked her for the price of milk and bread in her local supermarket.

Short of getting a rise out of the Secretary of State, Thérèse was well-prepped on the bread-and-butter issue. She easily rebuffed the half-baked attack, conjuring up the figures for a pint, two pints and a “seeded loaf from Tesco” with ease. Better luck next time, Jim – no point crying over spilt milk

mdi-timer 12 January 2023 @ 11:55 12 Jan 2023 @ 11:55 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Coffey Forgets Environmental Achievements After Too Much Christmas Partying

Thérèse Coffey took to one of the last Westminster Christmas parties of the season last night, for the Conservative Environment Network’s annual do. During her speech, delivered sporting a Father Christmas hat, Coffey claimed she is the voice of the plants and the fungi, referred to herself in third person, and apologised for some of what’s happened this year. “Can I hope you enjoy a fabulous Christmas, I’m very sorry for some of the things that happened along the way!”   

The most enjoyable moment came when the ex-DPM tried reeling off some of her department’s achievements of the last few months, only to have to ask the eco-audience for help before admitting she’d spend the day partying with her civil servants:

“In two months since arriving as Secretary of State, we have delivered those targets, we’ve laid the statutory instruments, we’ve achieved the negotiations today on the fisheries, what else have we done today? We’ve made sure that we’ve actually put more money into making sure the sustainable farming initiative  will have more take-up of farmers, we’ve signed off the new environment land management scheme… I’m trying to remember… I’ve actually had my Christmas do today with my civil servants so that’s why I’m so effusive! And why I’m wearing this [hat]!

Coffey’s certainly the government voice of funguys…

mdi-timer 21 December 2022 @ 10:09 21 Dec 2022 @ 10:09 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
LISTEN: Thérèse Coffey’s Ringtone Interrupts Today Interview… Again

In what is now becoming a bit of a running theme, Thérèse Coffey’s phone has once again interrupted a Today programme appearance. Unfortunately, for some reason she’s Forgot About Dre and switched to a default Samsung tune instead. That Ain’t No Fun.

Thérèse, if you’re reading this, Guido recommends this Soundcloud trap remix instead. The Guy Newsroom is playing it on repeat…

mdi-timer 11 October 2022 @ 10:24 11 Oct 2022 @ 10:24 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Coffey’s Bond Girl Group Chat

Away from the mini-Budget noise, Guido’s just got a hold of highly classified intelligence concerning the now-Deputy PM Thérèse Coffey. Back in 2016, while she was still a junior Defra Minister, Coffey created and ran a WhatsApp group chat containing all the then-Parliamentary Under Secretaries of State, most of whom were women. Now, For Your Eyes Only, a co-conspirator has shared the name she aptly gave that group… Pussy Galore.

* Yes, her name is Thérèse, not Theresa. Unfortunately Guido’s source can’t spell. The screenshots have been verified as authentic.

mdi-timer 23 September 2022 @ 17:20 23 Sep 2022 @ 17:20 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Truss Begins Work on Scrapping Nannying Junk Food Tax

Despite politics shutting down for a fortnight, it appears Liz is already powering on with fulfilling her campaign policy of scrapping Boris’s out-of-character junk food tax. During the leadership race, Liz promised to halt the ban on buy-one-get-one-free promotions and deals on junk food if she became PM. This morning we learn Liz, Kwasi and Coffey have ordered a Treasury review of the evidence around the obesity policy, which could also lead to ditching calorie counts on menus. It may even look at the 2018 sugar tax…

Guido understands the policy is being spun in two ways: both as an anti-government interference, anti-red tape policy; and a policy to alleviate the cost of living in light of the unprecedented global economic situation. The move would also kill off dead large swathes of Henry Dimbleby’s – the government food tsar’s – 2021 call for a £3bn sugar and salt tax levy.  A reminder that Dimbleby’s own fast food chain Leon is more calorific than McDonald’s…

By all accounts The Guardian’s civil service sources are both “aghast” and angry at the move, despite it being an overt leadership election promise by Liz. One source told their health policy editor, with dripping disappointment, that “There doesn’t seem to be any appetite from Thérèse for nanny state stuff.” Guido’s almost surprised to see the paper not mention that her victory drinks last week were held at the offices of Deliveroo, implying some sort of dark lobbying victory. After the big-state splurge of Liz’s energy policy, it’s reassuring to see her making good on her other ideologically-driven promises…

mdi-timer 14 September 2022 @ 08:44 14 Sep 2022 @ 08:44 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Previous Page Next Page