MICHAEL Russell has dismissed Alister Jack's claims that Tories are not trying to sneak through a Scottish power grab in post-Brexit legislation.

The Scottish Secretary told BBC Scotland plans for a UK "internal market" amounted to a "power surge" and not a "power grab".

The proposals have been set out in a white paper, with legislation to follow later in the year.

Russell said any assurances from the UK were "not true".

Ministers in London say the resulting legislation will underpin the UK’s “internal market” and hand extra responsibilities to the three devolved assemblies.

As this could lead to different regulatory regimes in the UK the Government has drawn up a trade bill to underpin the “internal market”.

At the heart of that is a “mutual recognition” mechanism. This would see regulations in one part of the UK recognised in all the other nations.

That terrifies ministers in Edinburgh who believe that regime could ultimately lead to lower standards in food safety and environmental protections being imposed in Scotland.

UK Business Secretary Alok Sharma said the move would see "the biggest transfer of powers in the history of devolution".

But the Scottish government has said the plan would "strip power" from the Scottish Parliament.

Speaking on BBC Scotland's Sunday Politics programme, Mr Jack said the objections raised by Mr Russell were a "confected red herring".

He said there was "absolutely no threat" to Scottish government policies like free university tuition or alcohol minimum pricing.

"There is not a single power being taken away from Holyrood or any of the other devolved administrations and when challenged in parliament this week, they couldn't come up with a single power they're losing," he said.

"This is absolutely a power surge for them, not a power grab."

He said chlorinated chicken being sold in the UK is "not going to happen".

"Chlorinated chicken can't be sold in the UK. Nor can hormone-induced beef. We're quite clear about that. They are illegal products," he said.

"We're going to bring all the EU food standards into UK domestic law at the end of this year in the Withdrawal Act. And then we intend to increase our food production standards and our animal welfare standards which are already the highest in Europe."

Jack claimed the changes would enhance food standards, adding: "Were it ever to come to pass that a future government did something on food standards that didn't satisfy the other devolved administrations first of all there would be a bill to go through the UK Parliament on that trade deal and then there would be consent motions sought from the other administrations."

Russell said he had "no doubt" that under the current proposals chlorinated chicken could be sold in Scotland, even if Holyrood objected to it. 

He said the proposals were there because the UK wanted to be able to do "bad trade deals" with other countries as they were the "only trade deals left to them".

"To do so they want to make sure that neither the Scottish Parliament or the Welsh Parliament or the Northern Irish Parliament can interfere with that," he said.

"That won't just be bad for consumers, it'll be very bad for business. It will put Scottish businesses out of business if they go ahead."

Russell said he had heard many assurances in the past from the UK Government but they had "come to nothing".