A mission by UK red meat exports to boost sales of lamb and beef in the all important US market has been hailed 'a success'.
The mission was centred around the Annual Meat Conference in Texas, which took place on 6-8 March.
According to the AHDB, the trade show resulted in a number of valuable connections with buyers in the United States.
The levy organisation, which spearheaded the trade visit, said there was now the potential to boost British red meat exports.
According to the latest data from HMRC, red meat exports to the US in 2022 topped £36 million.
Pork shipments made up the lion’s share, worth £27.9 million – up 18% in value on the previous year.
Last year, 1,235 tonnes of beef were exported to the US, worth £8.2m. But shipments were down on the previous year due to the beef import quota filling quickly as other exporting nations also targeted the market.
And in October of last year, the first shipment of lamb from the UK arrived in the US after more than two decades.
AHDB’s international market development director Dr Phil Hadley said that the event exceeded expectations and while there were challenges in exporting to the US, the opportunities were plentiful.
“We face a number of challenges exporting red meat to this market, including raising awareness of brand Britain and competing with countries that are already well established and well-regarded by American consumers.
“However, the reception we received from buyers was very encouraging, with most giving positive feedback to the taste and high-quality of our red meat and even arranging meetings with our exporters to discuss possible orders.”
The mission to the United States also included visits to local retailers, a beef ranch and a sheep farm.
AHDB’s senior export manager for America, Susana Morris said that US was an important export market for British red meat.
"It’s vital that we continue to have a presence at trade shows and conferences to ensure that we make valuable connections with importers.
“This is the first time that AHDB has attended the Annual Meat Conference and we were delighted with the quality of the event and the calibre of attendees who visited our stand.
"We look forward to seeing the fruits of our labour through the creation of commercial orders.”