Royal British Legion to ‘stop selling poppies in the EU because of Brexit’

The charity reportedly said the cost cannot be justified due to Brexit-related red tape.

The i newspaper say they have seen an email stating that poppies won't be sold in the EU until legislation is reviewed.
The i newspaper say they have seen an email stating that poppies won't be sold in the EU until legislation is reviewed.

The Royal British Legion (RBL) will no longer sell poppies in the European Union following Brexit, according to reports.

The RBL, which provides support to veterans and members of the British Armed Forces, is said to have sent an email to its supporters saying that sales of poppies will need to “cease” in the EU for the forseeable future due to outstanding Brexit legislation.

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The i newspaper reported that it could not justify the expense, including customs charges, to send poppies overseas following Britain’s departure from the EU’s customs union on January 1.

Poppies are worn in October and November for Armistice Day, and the charity sells them to raise money for members of the armed forces, veterans and their families.

The i said it has seen a copy of the email sent out to supporters by the RBL.

A Government spokeswoman told PA: “We are focused on supporting UK organisations as they adjust to our new trading relationship with the EU.

“The work of The Royal British Legion and the money they raise through their annual poppy appeal is incredibly important and we will engage with them to ensure they get the support they need to operate in the EU.”

A number of businesses have faced red tape following Britain’s exit from the EU, with retailers, fresh food companies and fishermen complaining of increased costs and delays to delivery due to paperwork.

London and Brussels are currently locked in a battle over the Northern Ireland Protocol following the unilateral action taken by the British government earlier this year to apply an extension to a transition period.

The action was aimed to try and help goods move more easily between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK after supermarkets’ shelves in Northern Ireland were stripped bare due to exporting and importing problems in early 2021.

The move was criticised by Brussels and on Thursday, the UK formally requested an extension, allowing sausages, burgers and mince to continue being sent from Great Britain to Northern Ireland until September 30.

The European Commission is currently assessing the request.

Additional reporting by PA.