Once again, the desperation of increasingly stretched Telegraph hacks and an editorial line that requires the elevation of every scrap of anti-EU sentiment to the level of serious discussion have come together to give readers another slice of hokum as they are told - with a straight face - “Shoppers want fruit and veg in pounds and ounces”. This story carries the by-line of “Chief political correspondent” Christopher “No” Hope.
Ignoring for the time being all those shoppers who are already buying their fruit and veg not in pounds and ounces from Asda, Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Morrisons, Waitrose, Aldi, Lidl, the Co-Op, and even the local farm shop, this story is total crap. Let’s have a look at Hope’s excuse note in more detail to see why.
“Ministers are under pressure to allow shops to sell meat, fruit and vegetables in pounds and ounces ahead of Britain leaving the European Union … Customers have been asking shop owners if they can have groceries weighed in pounds and ounces rather than grams and kilograms ahead of Brexit … The British Weights and Measures Association said that ‘one or two’ shops had been in contact every week since the June 23 referendum asking if they can sell produce in imperial measurements”. And that’s it.
It gets worse: shops can already sell produce in imperial measurements. But the scales on which that produce is weighed have to be metric ones, with the imperial measurement a conversion from the equivalent metric. This is just pandering to the Tel’s oldest voters, as is “The requirement to display in metric should end when Britain repeals the European Communities Act 1972 and formally leaves the European Union”.
So is the flagrant dishonesty, like flat earth MP Peter Bone being allowed to get away with “our biggest trading partner by a mile - the United States - is still on imperial measurements”. Our biggest trading partner, by a mile, is the rest of the EU. The USA is in a minority of one when it comes to retaining imperial measurements, and even then, some of those used Stateside do not match the UK equivalent (like gallons).
That does not stop the paper backing up Hope’s hopeful copy with an editorial which perpetuates the dishonest claim “Because Britain is still, for now, an EU member, our laws forbid traders to sell goods measured solely in pounds and ounces” and then tells readers “The EU demands the metric scale be used, regardless of the fact that many British shoppers still think in imperial measures - including many of the younger generation”.
Er, the “younger generation” weren’t taught imperial at school, so how does the Tel figure that one out? You’ll love his slice of idiocy: “The customers of fast-food chains have grown up ordering their burgers by the quarter-pound, not in 113-gram servings”. Just f*** right off. I mean, seriously, just f*** off and then f*** off some more. It’s a product name, for Christ’s sake. Like a Whopper or Big Mac. Or a Telegraph bumper shit bucket.
Seriously, Telegraph hacks, try to make the excuses look convincing. Because this isn’t.
[PS desperate Telegraph executives - looks even worse running Europhobic rubbish like that when you’ve got a honking great Eurostar ad at the foot of the page teasing cheap trips to Paris]