NI begins EU assault in earnest

Work on the resumption of beef exports to Europe began in earnest last week.

Northern Ireland Minister Agriculture Minister Jeff Rooker hosted a lunch on 3 May in Brussels which featured beef from the ? rst Northern Ireland consignment arriving in Europe since the ban was lifted. The Minister said that he was delighted that the day had ?nally arrived when Northern Ireland could once again export beef and live cattle on the same basis as other Member States.

"This is a signi?cant occasion for the Northern Ireland agrifood sector and I pay tribute to the way in which stakeholders and government have worked together to secure the ending of the export ban."

The Minister also noted that: "In anticipation of this day, the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development and industry partners have carried out a wide range of vital preliminary work that will lay the foundations for the future development of potential export markets.

"This work has focused on commissioning market research, assessing export potential of Northern Ireland companies and facilitating the development of international buyers."