‘Overwhelmingly positive’ response to US Welsh lamb mission
Published:  20 January, 2014

Hybu Cig Cymru (HCC) – Meat Promotion Wales said its diplomatic mission to promote Welsh Lamb exports in North America was very successful.

HCC chief executive Gwyn Howells said: “The series of meetings we had with leading officials from the United States Agriculture Department (USDA) and other North American meat organisations were overwhelmingly positive.

“We are confident that our efforts will be rewarded and that our American friends will be able to savour high quality PGI Welsh Lamb.”

Welsh lamb had recently won Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) status from the European Commission.

The mission was led by Welsh Minister for Natural Resources and Food Alun Davies, with the delegation meeting the USDA, as well as visiting Canada, where Welsh lamb is already exported.

HCC believed now the US had allowed European beef to be imported, it is vital that Welsh Lamb gain access.
Howells added: “The potential rewards for Wales are enormous. HCC estimates that PGI Welsh Lamb exports to the USA could be worth £20 million a year to our farmers and processing companies.”

Laura Dodds, HCC’s Market Development Manager, said: “As part of our mission we also demonstrated how Wales could help encourage lamb demand generally in the USA.

“In light of the decline of the domestic lamb industry in the US – which now has just 5.34m head of sheep compared with Wales’ 9m – our position was warmly welcomed by the USDA, the North America Meat Association, the Meat Import Council of America and the Tri Nations lamb group.”