UK beef trade deal with US makes progress

By Aidan Fortune

- Last updated on GMT

UK beef trade deal with US makes progress

Related tags Us Uk Beef AHDB Packaging equipment & materials Processing equipment & plant design

A deal to allow UK beef into the US has taken a positive step with the two countries agreeing on standards.

US authorities have agreed equivalence of standards on the UK’s disease control measures following a three-week inspection that took place last summer. This means that after the final administrative details are carried out, UK beef can be shipped to the US.

The export deal, worth an estimated £66m over the first five years, comes following extensive negotiations between the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) in partnership with the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), APHA, FSA, Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) and Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales (HCC) and other organisations including UKECP.

The inspections carried out in August 2019 included tours of five beef sites, four pork and lamb, as well as several laboratories and followed a visit by delegates from the US sheep industry, organised by AHDB.

AHDB international market development director Dr Phil Hadley said: “This is another fantastic boost for industry. Today’s announcement is a crucial step in our ambitions to gain market access for our beef and lamb, to go with our existing pork trade, to the all-important US market.

“We have worked collaboratively with industry and government to get this agreement and we will continue to work to get this partnership over the line and to see our products in the US market. Once the final administrative details are carried out, commercial trade will begin.”

The inspection in the summer was part financed from the £2m fund of AHDB red meat levies ring-fenced for collaborative projects which is managed by Britain’s three meat levy bodies: AHDB, HCC and QMS.

In February 2020, the North American Meat Institute and the British Meat Processors Association signed a memorandum of understanding to work together​ ahead of any trade deals.

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