COVID-19 Defra Update

COVID-19 Defra Update

27 Mar 2020

At this busy time, Government communications are increasing to ensure that stakeholders are aware of updated guidance. As a result, you may have received the information below from different sources.

Latest guidance from Public Health England can be found here.

Secretary of State letter to thank those in the food and drink industry

The Environment Secretary has written to all those working hard to feed the nation at this difficult time.

Social media content on responsible shopping

Please share our ‘how to shop safely’ video on Twitter and Facebook. If you would like to post this video natively or discuss social media collaboration, please email

HMRC helpline number to change from tomorrow

HMRC have now changed their helpline number to ensure those needing help and support can keep reaching their advisers. The new helpline number is 0800 024 1222 and is open from 8am to 4pm Monday to Friday. Calls to the old helpline number will be redirected.

AHDB guidance

The AHDB has created an advice page for farmers and growers. This can be found on the AHDB website.

EU green corridors guidance

The European Commission has issued new advice on border management, and how it intends to keep freight moving across Europe. This can be found on the European Commission website.

Deferral of VAT payments

HMRC are giving businesses the option to defer VAT payments which are due between 20 March and 30 June. More details are on

Coronavirus Bill explainer

After it received Royal Assent last night, information has been updated on the measures in the Coronavirus Act and the effect they will have. This can be found on

Coronavirus: Latest retailer activity

The British Retail Consortium (BRC) are providing a daily update on the actions taken by retailers to respond to the Coronavirus pandemic.

You can read today’s update on the BRC website.

Number of coronavirus (COVID-19) cases and risk in the UK

As of 9am on 25 March 2020, a total of 97,019 people have been tested, of which 87,490 were confirmed negative and 9,529 were confirmed positive. 463 patients in the UK who tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) have died.

Find out the risk level in the UK, what to do if you have symptoms, and what the government is doing about the virus here.

COVID-19: guidance for employees, employers and businesses

Organisations should pay particular attention to the guidance for employees, employers and businesses which is being updated regularly with the latest advice.

This bulletin provides information for employers and businesses on Coronavirus (COVID-19). All guidance, information and announcements can be found at

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