IFA President John Bryan said the re-opening of the Japanese market to Irish beef is a very significant and positive development for Ireland’s €2bn beef and livestock sector.
He said it follows years of negotiations and major work by the Department of Agriculture and Bord Bia.
John Bryan said market access to the Japan is very important in terms of enhancing the reputation of Irish beef. “This sends a strong signal to other markets that our beef adheres to highest standards in the world.”
The IFA President said the main Japanese demand from Ireland will be for mountain chain and tongue, with the potential to export of €10m to €15m each year. Market access will also present Ireland with the potential to develop exports of higher value cuts.
The Japanese market closed to Irish and EU beef exports in 2000 following BSE concerns.The Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers’ Association has said that while the re-opening of the Japanese market for Irish beef is positive, it remains to be seen how much it impacts beef prices in the long run.
ICSA president Gabriel Gilmartin said, “While additional revenue of up to €15 million for the Irish beef industry is a very welcome development, it is not enough to make a significant impact on beef prices in the coming months. However, it sends out a very positive signal on the quality of Irish beef and the meat industry must build on this to deliver better prices.”
Mr Gilmartin commended An Taoiseach and the Minister for Agriculture on their efforts in securing the agreement with the Japanese government.