In January 2020, the United Kingdom officially left the European Union, leaving it free to set up its own trade policy and negotiate deals. There were several back-and-forth exchanges as the two sides hammered out an agreement for the future. Nearly a year later, on December 25, Britain clinched a historic post-Brexit free trade agreement with the EU.
But for those used to a certain level of flexibility when travelling to one of the EU nations, the new post-Brexit world comes with several strange limitations. And in case of one group of drivers arriving in the Netherlands by ferry from the UK sandwiches turned out to be a big 'no-no'.
According to video footage from a Dutch channel, officials are stopping drivers and eventually confiscating their meal. As one of the officials explain, they were no longer "allowed to bring certain foods to Europe, like meat, fruit, vegetables, fish" across the border.
Indeed, the UK government website lays down guidelines for the same. "Drivers travelling to the EU should be aware of additional restrictions to personal imports. If you are carrying prohibited items in your luggage, vehicle or person you need to use, consume, or dispose of them at or before the border. You cannot bring POAO (products of an animal origin) such as those containing meat or dairy (e.g. a ham and cheese sandwich) into the EU," the website explains.
When one of the drivers asked if he could keep just the bread (after all the ham within the sandwich was the contraband) he received a negative answer. Even as the customs officials appear rather apologetic, one says rather wryly, "welcome to Brexit".