UK poultry farmers will soon have their produce served on Japanese plates thanks to a new export deal worth an estimated £65 million over five years.
The UK Government says it has secured an agreement to export UK poultry meat to Japan, in a deal worth up to £13m a year for the poultry sector.
It said the deal, which follows four years of negotiations to agree specific animal health requirements, would create new opportunities for UK farmers and exporters, with shipments of UK poultry meat due to start going across to Japan this month.
“Our high-quality poultry with its exceptional flavour is renowned around the world, as are the high standards of food safety and animal welfare demonstrated by farmers and producers across the UK,” said UK Food Minister, Victoria Prentis.
“The Japanese market will now be able to enjoy more of our unique produce, adding to an already varied collection of UK food, such as pork, beef and lamb, already available to its customers.”
She added: “We are working hard to open new markets for our agri-food businesses, and this is a significant opportunity for the UK poultry sector.”
UK poultry will appear on Japanese tables for the first time ever!
This is a historic moment for UK farmers, which the industry estimates could bring a £65 million boost to poultry producers over the next five years.
— Defra UK (@DefraGovUK) June 16, 2021
The deal was welcomed by poultry and meat industry leaders.
British Poultry Council chief executive, Richard Griffiths, said: “Our industry has worked closely with Government to open doors and create new opportunities for British poultry meat businesses that produce safe, affordable and nutritious food to world-class standards.
“We look forward to carrying on pursuing new markets to continue putting UK poultry meat on every table around the world.”
International Meat Trade Association chief executive officer Katie Doherty said the agreement means exporters can take advantage of tariff reductions – this includes a reduction in the tariffs on frozen chicken cuts from an average of 10% to zero – over a number of years.
She added: “This could not have been achieved without the hard work of civil servants and government, in partnership with the UK poultry industry, so our sincere thanks goes to all those involved. We look forward to continuing to work on opening more new markets for UK exporters.”