UK dairy industry looks to Canada to increase exports

Shipments to Canada have risen over the last three years
Shipments to Canada have risen over the last three years

British dairy will take centre stage at a major food event in Canada as figures show exports of cheese to the country are increasing.

A selection of high-quality dairy products from the UK will arrive at SIAL Toronto at the end of April.

The premier food innovation event will see more than 18,000 visitors attend from more than 50 countries.

Latest figures show UK cheese exports are enjoying a period of strong growth. Overall, 2018 saw volumes increase by 11 per cent compared to the previous year – mostly due to higher cheddar exports, which were up 14 per cent.

In terms of value, cheese exports were worth 10 per cent more than in 2017, with cheddar contributing most to this growth.

Shipments to Canada have also risen over the last three years. The UK exported a total of 1,451 tonnes of cheese to the country last year.

During the three-day event in Toronto, visitors will be able to sample the delights of Cheddar, Wensleydale, Lancashire and Stilton, among others.

Levy-board AHDB is returning to the event and will be joined by four British dairy producers; Bradburys, Somerdale, Quickes and Singletons.

As well as showcasing cheese, the event will provide exporters with the opportunity to meet with key influencers and potential buyers from the Canadian retail and food service sectors.

AHDB Senior Export Manager, Lucy Randolph said: “SIAL Canada is an incredibly important event for industry as it is highly regarded by buyers around the world. It provides us with the perfect place to showcase the premium quality cheese we are producing in the UK.”

She added: “We are seeing exports of cheese to Canada increasing, but there is still the opportunity for further growth. This is why attending events such as SIAL Canada is imperative if we are to increase trade with this important market.”

The dairy industry is looking to increase exports to countries outside the European Union amid ongoing Brexit negotiations.

Latest figures show that UK dairy exports increased last year but with most products going to the European Union.