There may be opportunities to displace Irish beef from the UK market, depending on the type of agreement that the UK has with the EU.
This is according to George Eustice, Minister of State for Agriculture, Fisheries, and Food in the UK, who was, speaking at the Oxford Farming Conference 2019.
“There are many opportunities for import substitution and – depending on the type of arrangement that we have with the European Union and others in the future,” Eustice told attendees.
“There may be opportunities to displace Irish beef from the UK market, opportunities to displace Danish or French dairy products, and opportunities to displace horticulture from the Netherlands.”
Despite the recent growth in new markets, the UK remains by far our single largest trading partner for the agri-food sector.
In 2017, almost €5.2 billion worth of agri-food exports went to the UK, according to Ireland’s Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, 38% of Ireland’s total agri-food exports.
In terms of beef, almost 50% of Ireland's beef exports go to the UK.
Irish beef exports to the UK in 2017 reached over €1.1 billion, which is almost one-fifth of Ireland’s total export value to the UK.
Possible tariffs will potentially increase trade costs between the UK and EU Member States, which would decrease the volume of trade between the two countries, hurting Irish farmers.
Ireland has a history of dependence on the UK’s importing of our agri-food goods, and divergence to other markets will offer less favourable and less valuable returns.
© 2019 Checkout – your source for the latest Irish retail news. Article by Aidan O’Sullivan. Click subscribe to sign up for the Checkout print edition.