IMPORTS of both beef and lamb showed a marked drop last year
as home production showed a sharp increase - of up to 18 per
cent in the case of beef.
Figures released today by the English Beef and Lamb Executive
(EBLEX) show that during 2005 production of UK beef was up from
709,000 tonnes in the same period in 2004 to 744,000 tonnes while
sheep meat production in the same months rose four per cent from
306,000 tonnes to 317,000 tonnes.
Much of the increase in beef production is laid at the door of
producers maximising carcase weights while production in Ireland
was down and supplies in the rest of Europe were also running at
a lower level.
During last year sheep production at home recovered from the drought
affected performance of 2004 making an extra 500,000 prime lambs
available for the market.
Duncan Sinclair, Economics Manager, said: “After October
last year the figures will also have been affected by restrictions
placed on the import of Brazilian beef by the EU and, with the
change in the OTM regulations this year, we will see further home
produced beef available for the market at the expense of imported
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