British lamb shipped to US for first time in two decades

Posted: 18 October 2022 | | No comments yet

Following USDA approval, British lamb has now been exported to the US for the first time in over 20 years.

lamb in bowl

British lamb producers have been allowed to ship lamb to the US following the United States Department for Agriculture (USDA) agreeing to open the market last year.

The first consignment was exported to the US in October 2022 and contained lamb produced by the meat processor Dunbia from its site in Carmarthenshire, Wales.

According to the UK Government, the industry estimates that the US market will be worth approximately £37 million in the first five years of trade, meaning that British farmers will now be able to access more than 300 million US consumers.

“Tucking into roast lamb for Sunday lunch is quintessentially British – and now millions of American families will now be able to enjoy our top-quality lamb too,” said Ranil Jayawardena, the UK’s Environment Secretary.

“The opportunity for growth for British food is enormous – bringing jobs, skills, and prosperity across the nation. With our mission to unlock growth, we will continue to secure more opportunities for our farmers and food producers to benefit from new markets.”

The USDA agreement was initiated due to wider efforts across government to drive growth and create new opportunities for the British food and farming sector. This, according to the UK Government, will boost jobs, skills and productivity across the country. Pivotally, farmers will be able to capitalise on new trade freedoms outside the EU through global export opportunities.

Phil Stocker, Chief Executive of the National Sheep Association, labelled the landmark export as “fantastic news for the British sheep industry”, while Dr Richard Irvine, UK Deputy Chief Veterinary Officer declared it “success for British industry, in addition to the existing agreements enabling beef and pork exports from the UK to the USA”.

Considering the future, Dr Phil Hadley, AHDB International Market Development Director, added: “We hope this order will be the first of many, allowing millions of US consumers to enjoy our world-renowned lamb, while bringing a major boost to UK sheep producers and exporters, who have another valuable market in which to sell their products.”

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