2013 shows early signs of export boost for Welsh lamb

2013 shows early signs of export boost for Welsh lamb

New figures from the first half of 2013 show positive signs for producers and exporters of Welsh Lamb.

Data from HMRC show that UK sheep meat exports were 14% higher between January and June, compared with the same period in 2012.

The rise was due to an increase in domestic production of lamb, which was up by five percent in the first half of the year and increased demand within Europe and further afield.

The two main markets for Welsh Lamb, France and Germany, both increased imports this year while there was also a significant increase in exports to Hong Kong.

John Richards, Industry and Market Information Officer with Welsh red meat promotion agency Hybu Cig Cymru (HCC), said: “While it is too early to say that we will see an increase in the year as a whole, the results from the first half of 2013 are very encouraging.”

“The figures also reveal that UK imports of New Zealand lamb were up by 30% in the first half of 2013, which impacted on the price producers were receiving earlier in the year.”

However, early reports indicate that there could be a fall in export volumes from New Zealand from their 2013 lamb crop due to decreased production.

“Initial estimates based on scanning results suggest there could be two million fewer export lambs this year, and with New Zealand looking to increase supply to China, this could open up new and current markets for Welsh Lamb” said Richards.

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