China to be a key focus for Eblex conference

Eblex has reported the impact of trade with China on British beef and lamb markets will be a key topic of its annual conference next month.

‘The Impact of China’ presentation will be held by Michael Sondergaard, supply chain director for Tulip, at the conference in Warwickshire on 4 November.

China is already the biggest single importer of British pork products, but British beef and lamb products have been banned from China since the BSE crisis 30 years ago. However, Defra reported in June this year British and Chinese officials signed an agreement to begin negotiations around lifting the ban. 

With various initiatives under way, Eblex reported opening up trade to China to be of key significance. A UK sheep delegation, organised by Eblex visited the country earlier in the year, including Jean-Pierre Garnier, Eblex export manage

r, and Chris Lloyd, Eblex industry development manager, alongside Charles Sercombe, chairman of the National Farmers’ Union’s Livestock Board, and Phil Stocker, president of the National Sheep Association (NSA). The delegation visited farming and sheep breeding companies as well as farms, abattoirs and markets in the inner Mongolian region.

“Wages are rising by 13% a year and demand for lamb is expected to hit one million tonnes by 2020. The potential is significant if we can secure market access and English producers and processors will be the big winners,” said Lloyd.

Eblex is urging its levy payers, for whom the conference is free, to book their places as the event is already filling up.

Dr Phil Hadley, Eblex southern senior regional manager and conference organiser, said: “Our annual conference is again proving to be a popular event for professionals throughout the beef and lamb sector supply chain.

“It will give a thorough insight into key issues currently affecting the industry and give delegates the opportunity to discuss the topics with the Eblex team. I would urge anyone in the industry who has not already registered to attend to do so and avoid missing out on what is a key date in the industry calendar.”

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