‘The UK is not a market we are going to give up on’
The UK will remain an important market for Irish beef, regardless of Brexit, according to Padraig Brennan, Director of International Markets with Bord Bia.
He said that Bord Bia is looking at what it and Ireland needs to do in light of Brexit.
“Some 37pc of Irish food and drink exports go to the UK. It is not a market that we are going to give up on.”
Speaking in Dubai at Gulfoods, one of the world’s largest food fairs, where 21 Irish companies are showcasing their produce, he said that the shape of a new trading environment with the UK is not known and it will take considerable time for this to emerge.
But, he also said that the more markets and customers there are for Irish food and drink exports the better for producers.
Irish exports to the US in 2016 were worth €950m he said and that was a market that the sector needed.
“We have to find premium product placements for Irish beef. The UK market is one of the highest paying markets in recent years.”
He also said that the UK consumer wants minced beef. “Irish beef is not in the wrong position. Some 60pc of beef consumed in the UK is mince, but we need more niche markets and products into those premium markets.”