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Dublin: 7 °C Tuesday 21 January, 2020

Ireland goes east in bid to offload meat mountain

Beef, lamb, mutton and pigmeat on the way to Philippines.

Image: sheep via shutterstock

THE PHILIPPINES HAS been opened up as a new market for the import of Irish meat products.

This follows the news that recent sanctions by Russia could leave Ireland facing the prospect of a ‘meat mountain’ of surplus goods. Economists recently predicted that having access to the large Russian market cut off would have a serious impact on Western countries facing sanctions.

The permission to import came after agreements being reached with veterinary authorities from the Republic of the Philippines. The deal sees permission being granted for imports of beef, sheepmeat and pigmeat from Ireland.

The last time Ireland exported beef to the Philippines was in 2001. At the time the market was worth €9.1 million to Irish producers.

The Philippines is a growing market for beef. In 2013, the country imported 117,000 tonnes of beef. This figure is expected to rise to 127,000 by 2020.

The reason for this growth has been in part attributed to a rapid increase in population. In 2000, the countries population stood at 76 million. Today it stands at 100 million and is expected to grow to 120 million over the next ten years.

On the deal, a spokesperson for Bord Bia welcomed the development:

“South East Asia is an important market for beef. They have beef import requirements. It is important they have access to as many markets as possible”.

One the agreement, Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Simon Coveney said:

I am firmly of the view that it is vital that Irish companies to have access to as many markets worldwide as possible and my Department and I will continue to work closely with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and Bord Bia to this end.

The accreditation for Irish companies to export to the Philipinnes shall last around a year, expiring on August 23 next year. The agreement will see 43 Irish beef processors, 39 pig processors and 29 sheep processors exporting goods to the South East Asian nation.

Read: Economists are predicting that cheese mountains could become a reality

Also: Here’s how Russia’s ban on most EU food imports affects Ireland…

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