The Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has announced that the first consignment of Northern Irish beef is now on sale in the Philippines and could become a “major trade opportunity” worth £34m to the UK.
The Filipino authorities announced in August 2017 that beef exports from the UK to the Philippines could recommence, alongside existing exports of pork, chicken and lamb.
DEFRA Deputy Chief Veterinary Officer, Dr Perpetua McNamee said: “We have been working in partnership with Defra and industry to identify new markets and opportunities for our local meat sector. This process began in 2015 and it is welcoming to note that the Filipino people will now have the opportunity to sample the fine quality beef produced by our farmers.”
Dr McNamee also welcomed the announcement that the pork industry in NI will now have access to the Taiwanese market after authorities agreed to accept pork imports from the UK for the first time.
She added: “This market is of particular significance to the pork industry because it will provide opportunities for pork processors to export much of the less marketed ‘fifth quarter’ products which have a limited outlet more locally.
“Gaining access to the Philippines and Taiwanese markets is further recognition of the rigorous standards we have in place to produce our high-quality, safe and wholesome meat. We in DEFRA will continue to invest much time and energy into opening new markets across the globe to expand the agri-food industry in NI.”
Defra forecasts that additional trade to these new markets may be worth £34m and £50m to the UK beef and pork industries respectively over the next five years.