Laois TD and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Charlie Flanagan, has said that the announcement of improved access for Irish beef into the US market is really good news for Laois beef farmers.
“Any expansion of Irish beef into international markets is really good news for Laois beef farmers who can seek to maximise their output.
“The Minister for Agriculture, Michael Creed, has confirmed to me that US authorities now recognise Ireland’s raw meat control system as equivalent to that of the US.
“In principle, this extends our US market access to include manufacturing beef intended for grinding, which is typically used in burgers and similar processed products. There is a really big market for this in the US.
“Furthermore the US market for grass fed, natural and organic beef, at which Ireland excels in producing, is estimated to be growing at approximately 20%+ per annum.
“Developing new markets for our beef is a key element of the Government’s Food Wise 2025 strategy.
“This decision regarding the US market, which is the result of intensive discussions and negotiations, is a real coup for Irish beef as Ireland is the first EU Member State to achieve this status in the US.
“This follows on from Ireland being the first EU Member State since the BSE crisis to be granted access into the US market for our beef in 2014.
“There is really significant potential now for Ireland to capitalise on the huge US beef market and I hope to see Laois beef farmers benefitting from this,” stated Minister Flanagan.