January 25, 2022
SHANGHAI – With last year’s exports of Irish pork to China expected to hit a record high, Ireland is now seeking to diversify its exports of meat to the country, said officers of Bord Bia, Irish Food Board, the promotional agency for food products of the Irish government.
During a seminar held in Shanghai on Wednesday, Chen Siyi, EU Programmes specialist of Bord Bia’s China branch, said the estimated value of Irish pork exports to China is estimated to be around 215 million euros ($244 million) last year, up 8 percent from 2020.
The value of Irish pork exports to China has been on the rise in recent years, and with the figure exceeding 200 million euros in 2020, China has become the biggest importer of Irish pork, according to data from the agency.
Conor O’Sullivan, manager of Bord Bia, China said that the promotional agency is planning to introduce Irish lamb to the Chinese consumers this year.
A trade deal between China and Ireland which will allow Irish lamb enter China market was struck by the two governments in September. O’Sullivan expects the trade to commence this year.
“I have noticed that food consumption here is becoming more diverse. Chinese used to eat pork mainly, but more and more people are now trying imported lamb, beef, chicken and also plant-based protein,” he said. “This is a very big opportunity for high-quality Irish foods.”
O’Sullivan noted that the agency will this year continue to participate in trade shows such as the China International Import Expo and the China International Consumer Products Expo to promote more Irish food products.