Beefing-up UK exports

UK farmers looking for opportunities to export beef products to China will be encouraged by the recent relaxation of export criteria. A recent UK government press release titled “China opens doors to British Beef” explains what is being offered.

A summary of the press release is reproduced below:

The British beef industry is set to benefit from an estimated £230 million boost as the Chinese government today (18 October) finalised details of a historic UK-China agreement.

For the first time in over 20 years, UK farmers and beef producers will have full access to the Chinese market, marking the end of a ban imposed by China following the BSE outbreak in 1996.

Today’s announcement follows extensive inspections by the Chinese authorities – who have confirmed that British beef producers meet the necessary standards to export to their market – and marks the final step in securing access.

The Chinese authorities have cleared four beef sites for export in the first instance – with further sites under review – and the first exports are expected to be shipped in the next few months.

The China-UK beef agreement is the culmination of several years of engagement between UK and Chinese government officials. China’s ban was lifted in June last year when market access engagement for UK beef exports began.

It follows a number of inspections and inward missions hosted by the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB), in partnership with Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) and Hybu Cig Cymru (Meat Promotion Wales HCC) and other industry bodies, as well as government departments and agencies.

The announcement comes after China recently approved five British pork plants to export products to China, which will build on a market which is already worth £70 million per year.

China is currently the UK’s eighth largest export market for food and drink, with more than £610 million worth of products bought by Chinese consumers last year.

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