America imported more than £3 million worth of red meat from the UK in January – almost double the amount shipped in the same month last year.
According to the latest figures from HMRC, exports of pork rose almost 50 per cent to 592 tonnes, valued at £1.8 million – up from £1.2 million in January 2021. Beef shipments increased from a modest 22 to 220 tonnes – worth £1.3 million.
And lamb from the UK could soon compliment the pork and beef export figures, with the first commercial shipments expected to commence later this year.
However, AHDB Senior Export Manager for the Americas Susana Morris has warned that beef exports will slow this year as the US beef import quota has been filled.
Susana said: “The figures for January are very encouraging and our pork exports to the US continue to grow. Unfortunately, we are expecting our beef exports to decrease in the year ahead, as exporters now face a tariff of 26.4 per cent, making it very difficult for the UK to compete on cost.”
The US remains a key target market for AHDB’s Export team, with work ongoing to raise the profile of pork, beef and lamb from the UK to buyers across the country.
Last month, more than 40 key influencers in America got to sample pork and beef from the UK at an AHDB-organised meat and cheese tasting event in Los Angeles. Guests also got to meet with exporters to learn about Britain’s high animal welfare standards and traceability.
Susana added: “This was the first time we have organised a tasting event in the US, and we were delighted with the reception and feedback from our American guests.
“We had a great deal of interest from buyers, chefs and butchers, who were shown cuts of red meat that differ to those in the US. They were also extremely interested in the UK’s high animal welfare standards and our hormone-free meat – all of which makes our red meat appetising to American consumers.”
The following week, AHDB attended the first-ever SIAL America food and drink show to fly the flag for beef, pork and cheese from the UK. Held in Las Vegas, the event attracted importers from across the US, as well as food service companies, distributors, retailers and wholesalers.
Susana said: “We know that the US presents many opportunities for our red meat exporters, so AHDB is committed to showcasing our products to buyers across the US. We will continue to attend trade shows and host our own activities in this market, to help build on these impressive export figures in the year ahead.”