Trioni gains access to £5bn export market

By Nicholas Robinson contact

- Last updated on GMT

UK organic dairy production rose by 4.4% in 2013
UK organic dairy production rose by 4.4% in 2013

Related tags: Soil association, Organic food

China’s £5bn organic export market has opened up to dairy producers after the Welsh organic dairy company Trioni achieved accreditation from the country.  

West Wales-based Trioni is the first UK dairy farm to secure certification to export to China and Hong Kong, according to Laurence Harris, founder of the company.

The deal is expected to boost the £1.4M turnover company’s exports, which account for 15% of its business, said Harris.

Earlier this year the Soil Association announced it had secured a deal​ with China’s Organic Food Development Centre to make it easier for UK organic companies to export to China.

Quintessentially British

Chinese consumers were looking for quintessentially British products, such as cheese and other dairy foods, Emma Yeats, Soil Association senior certification manager told FoodManufacture.co.uk in April.

“The Chinese are also taking more of an interest in where and how their food is produced, which is driving the market there,” ​she added.

Harris, who took over the 120 acre farm from his parents, has increased the size of the farm by 1,500% in over 40 years, he said.

By expanding into overseas territories, Trioni has boosted its sales by 20% year-on-year since 2012, said Harris.

Sales are already strong in the United Arab Emirates and are growing in China, but the company is also targeting India and the rest of the Middle East, as well as strengthening its business in London and the South East of England, he added.

‘International markets’

“Our organic certification in China is proof that through innovation and entrepreneurial product development, a local British family run business can expand into international markets,” ​said Harris.

“Whilst we focus on expanding into future markets, we won’t forget our UK roots, as we continue to produce and distribute consistently high quality organic dairy products throughout the UK.”

Organic dairy production in the UK rose by 4.4%​ last year, according to the Soil Association’s recent Organic Market Report.

However, the number of UK-based organic food and drink producers and processors fell by 6.3% to 6,487 in December 2012.

Despite a slump in UK organic production, home sales grew by 2.8% to £1.79bn, the report stated.

Although it might appear UK farmers have moved away from organic, production across the world is on the rise and global sales reached £43bn in 2012, according to the report.

UK organic market in figures

  • 2.8% rise in sales of organic
  • 4.4% rise in sales of organic dairy
  • 3.4% rise in sales of organic vegetables
  • 2.2% rise in sales of organic meat, fish and poultry

Source – Soil Association Organic Market Report 2014

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