While UK poultry processors secured access to UK in 2021, the rampant spread of Avian Influenza (Bird Flu) has led to restrictions on trade.
This new agreement will enable smoother trade of cooked poultry meat, meaning that additional high value exports to Japan can be made.
Moy Park is the first on the list to be officially registered to export cooked poultry to Japan under this agreement from its Grantham, Lincolnshire production facility.
Reaching a new market
Beatriz Curran, international business development manager at Moy Park said: “We are incredibly proud to be the first UK business set to benefit from this fantastic export opportunity. As a company, we are wholly focused on the highest standards of food safety, integrity and animal welfare and so we are thankful to collaborate with industry and partners to successfully reach this new market.
“With the momentum from this progress, we are confident that we can grow this export opportunity even further across our facilities given the technical excellence, focus and energy of our talented team and partners.”
Negotiations to resecure access to the Japanese market were led by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and its Agriculture Attaché, and colleagues based at the British Embassy in Tokyo, with support from the British Poultry Council (BPC), South Kesteven District Council and the Food Standards Agency (FSA).
Food and farming minister Mark Spencer added: “British poultry is rightly celebrated as some of the best in the world and I’m delighted that new high value products can now be enjoyed in Japan.
Flying the flag
“I’d like to pay tribute to our Agri-food Attaché network who work hard to secure trade opportunities like this and fly the flag for UK farmers.”
Japan’s reputation for its ‘stringent’ food safety and import control regime was meant that the opening of the market for UK cooked poultry products was heralded as a demonstration of the country’s confidence in the ‘high standards of UK poultry production methods’.
BPC chief executive Richard Griffiths welcomed the news and thanked the Government for its close work with industry for opening the door for businesses to export to markets such as Japan – especially in the face of challenges such as bird flu.
“We look forward to continuing our work building, maintaining and enhancing crucial markets and relationships – both existing and new,” he concluded.
Meanwhile, UK cheese producers exporting to Canada face losing millions of pounds and are already taking a hit during post-Brexit bilateral negotiations to establish a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with the country.