Delegation to review New Zealand sheep sector

Delegation to review New Zealand sheep sector

A cross-industry group from the UK sheep sector is to meet with counterparts in New Zealand next week to assess the current production outlook and see how we could better share knowledge on business efficiencies.

It follows a winter which saw an unusually high influx of lamb imports, particularly of specific cuts, negatively affecting the lamb price across Europe, and producers on both sides of the world want to meet to discuss mutual concerns on market issues.

The key objectives of the eight-strong group, co-ordinated by EBLEX, are to assess first-hand the current outlook for the New Zealand lamb industry, meet key exporters and supply chain representatives to better understand the challenges they face, and understand more about the Meat Industry Excellence initiative, which is seeking to reform the New Zealand sheep industry.

In addition, it gives an opportunity to explain to counterparts in New Zealand the influence that their exports have on the UK and EU markets, and the knock-on effects for European farmers.

“We are part of a global trade in sheep meat and so it is vital that we have the clearest view possible of the industry in other significant sheep meat producing nations,” said Nick.

“New Zealand is one of the leading sheep meat exporters in the world and Europe is their biggest market.

“We share common challenges and have lots of knowledge and information we can share on both sides, even more so than we already do. We can learn from them and they can learn from us.

“This visit is about keeping those channels as wide open as possible and I am delighted to be involved in the delegation representing the interests of producers and processors in the UK.”

While there, the group will meet farmer groups, processors and industry organisations, as well as attending the Beef and Lamb New Zealand Sheep Industry Awards, in Invercargill.

The group consists of:

· Nick Allen – EBLEX sector director
· Chris Lloyd – EBLEX industry development manager and head of knowledge transfer
· Paul Heyhoe – AHDB Market Intelligence
· Jonathan Barber – Farmer in Norfolk and EBLEX board member
· Charles Sercombe – Farmer, NFU livestock board chairman and involved in European farmer organisation groups.
· David Raine – Farmer, Currently on NFU Livestock board and former NSA chairman
· Peter Garbutt – NFU livestock policy adviser
· Phil Stocker – NSA chief executive.

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