HCC awarded £1.5 million to boost exports

Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales is to be awarded £1.5 million to focus on exports. 

Cabinet Secretary for Environment and Rural Affairs Lesley Griffiths AM made the announcement during the HCC reception at Anuga in Cologne, the world’s largest food tradeshow on Monday 9 October.

The funding has been awarded for the Enhanced Export Development Programme, which will commence in April 2018.

The funding is designed to provide a major boost to HCC’s efforts on behalf of the Welsh red meat industry to retain its vital European markets during the uncertainty of the next three years, while at the same time growing new business outside the European Union.

Speaking at the trade show in Cologne, HCC chief executive Gwyn Howells said:

“HCC welcomes this news by the Welsh Government to fund the Enhanced Export Development Programme, particularly in light of the uncertainty caused by the Referendum. Despite the ambiguity of Brexit, we’re seeing growth in the overseas trade for Welsh red meat and the Enhanced Export Development Programme will drive this forward and help the sector prepare for the future.”

He said the UK had had a strong start to the year. “The value of UK lamb exports was up by 25% in the first half of 2017 compared to last year and, as the recognised premium brand, PGI Welsh Lamb is playing a major role in driving this growth.

“HCC and our major processors have been successful in growing trade in Europe. Particularly encouraging is the new business in the premium foodservice industry: a major Italian wholesale chain has begun Welsh Lamb promotions; a high-end Swiss catering supplier has expanded its range of Welsh red meat; and Welsh Lamb will soon be in the own-brand premium range of one of Germany’s largest foodservice operators.

“This business must be secured and not put at risk, so the easiest possible access to European markets is what the industry is hoping for after Brexit, as well as continuity of the PGI status enjoyed by Welsh Lamb and Welsh Beef.”

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