ENGLISH lamb on the United States market could help boost overall lamb consumption in America, according to Meat & Livestock Australia.
The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has published proposals for consultation to relax import restrictions on British lamb in to the US as early as next year.
The move is the latest in ongoing efforts to allow Britain’s farmers to start exporting sheep meat to the United States’ 300 million consumers. The importation of UK beef and lamb was banned following the outbreak of BSE or mad cow disease in the UK in the late 1980s. Restrictions on beef were lifted in 2014. UK lamb imports are not expected to resume until after US inspectors visit to British sheep and cattle farms later this year.
An MLA spokesperson said Australian exporters should be confident that their long-standing trading relationships and performance in exporting consistently high quality and great tasting lamb will mean Australia will continue to be well-positioned in the US market.
“The efforts of Meat & Livestock Australia and Australian exporters in recent years, along with the US domestic lamb industry, have helped increase the popularity and interest in lamb after several decades of decline.
“Australia’s share of the market has also grown recently and we are the dominant importer, shipping more than double the amount NZ exports to the US, with a growing presence at both retail and foodservice,” the spokesperson said.
“There is a significant opportunity for Australian lamb in the US and it is in everyone’s interest that we continue to build consumption.
“The presence of lamb from the UK, or any other market that can meet the US’s food safety and animal health requirements, may well contribute to growing consumption.”
“It is unlikely that the UK could supply cheaper lamb to the US, however there are a number of factors that could make them competitive in the marketplace, including their declining currency.”
Click on this link for the latest statistics for lamb exports to the United States http://www.mla.com.au/prices-markets/market-news/chilled-lamb-exports-grow-in-2015-16-07072016/