Farm Ireland
Independent.ie

Thursday 14 December 2017

Irish sheepmeat granted access to Saudi Arabia

Margaret Donnelly

Margaret Donnelly

Irish sheepmeat has been granted access to Saudi Arabia the Department of Agriculture confirmed, just 48 hours after meeting with Saudi officials.

The Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed made the announcement on the final day of the Bord Bia trade mission to the Middle East, just 48 hours after leaving meetings with Saudi officials.

Department of Agriculture officials had met with Saudi officials to discuss access to the market for Irish sheepmeat.

The State-owned Saudi Agriculture and Livestock Company, which is in charge of sourcing food for the country met with the Irish Minister, veterinary and senior department officials in Saudi on the first leg of the Bord Bia trade mission.

The State body which manages health certificates also met the Irish delegation and it was agreed at the meeting that the process would commence.

It is understood that the decree will grant Irish sheepmeat access within a relatively short timeframe. Irish officials who met with their Saudi counterparts said the meetings had been extremely positive.

EU sheepmeat has been banned entry to Saudi in recent years due to concerns over scrapie in sheep.

Earlier this week the Minister announced enhanced access to Saudi for Irish beef, which will allow prepared consumer foods including cooked meats be exported to Saudi.

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