The EU is to formally agree to postpone a ban on some British meat products being sold in Northern Ireland, according to BBC News.
Should it be agreed, the move would allow manufacturers in Great Britain to continue to supply NI supermarkets with produce such as beef mince and sausages until September.
Chilled meat products were due to be prohibited from this week, as per the Northern Ireland Protocol arrangement agreed between the UK and the EU post-Brexit.
While the ban was officially meant to start from January this year, supermarkets were given a six-month grace period to help reorganise supply chains away from the UK mainland.
The ban was one of the conditions imposed on Northern Ireland to keep it in step with EU single market rules and prevent a breakdown in trade with the Republic of Ireland.
Commenting on the lack of an official announcement, British Meat Processors Association chief executive Nick Allen said: “While we’re still waiting for an eleventh hour confirmation that the UK and EU have agreed an extension of the grace period on mutually acceptable terms, we are pleased that the correct processes are being used to resolve these issues rather than political posturing.
Involving the meat industry
“We would also urge the Government to involve the meat industry in future discussions as the process of working out a more stable long-term solution continues.”
Meanwhile, members of the UK food and drink industry have cautiously welcomed the agreement of a free trade deal between the UK and Australia, but questioned the lack of detail surrounding competitiveness and animal welfare.
Earlier this month, prime minster Boris Johnson announced the UK had secured a trade deal with Australia eliminating tariffs on all UK goods, the first trade deal negotiated from scratch by the Government since Brexit.