Mexican market opens to British pork imports

UK farmers and food producers stand to benefit from access to a valuable new market, as Mexico has now officially opened its doors to UK pork for the first time. UK exporters can now tap into this brand new market, which is benefiting from strong demand for high quality pork.

Global pork exports from the UK were worth over £421m to our economy in 2020, reaching 75 export markets around the world. According to the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Council, access to the Mexican market alone is estimated at £50 million for UK pork producers in the first five years of trade.

This is another success for UK food and drink exports, after successfully securing access for UK beef to the US, UK poultry, beef and lamb to Japan and pork in Taiwan.

Defra Secretary of State George Eustice said:

It’s great to see another market opening its doors to high quality, wellbeing British produce.

Access to the Mexican market, with its significant demand for high quality pork, will be a welcome boost for our pig breeders and producers.

This is an important development, which will strengthen our global reputation for quality food and beverages.

As the world leader in animal welfare, British pork is globally recognized for its provenance, quality and traceability. Through the GREAT Britain & Northern Ireland campaign, the UK government aims to raise the international profile and reputation of food and drink products from across the UK and help more food and drink companies export their products to the stranger.

Today’s development follows more than four years of negotiations and inspections. The Mexican National Department of Agriculture and Food Health, Safety and Quality (SENASICA) inspected many premises across the UK in a visit that took place in February 2020, which led to the decision to approve four processing facilities and four associated cold stores in England and Wales. .

UK Deputy Chief Veterinary Officer Dr Richard Irvine said:

The UK prides itself on our high standards of food safety and the quality of food we are able to produce.

Access to UK pork exports to Mexico represents another success for the UK industry and continues to enhance our global reputation for excellence.

These inspections were carried out by Defra and the UK Export Certification Partnership (UKECP) and organized by the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB), with support from national and devolved government departments and agencies in the Kingdom United, including DIT Mexico.

The UK and Mexico have pledged to start negotiating an ambitious new free trade agreement this year, which will go much further than the existing one. These negotiations will complement our membership in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), an increasingly influential trade network of 11 dynamic economies stretching from the Indo-Pacific region to the Americas.

International Trade Secretary Liz Truss said:

This is a huge win for our farmers and food producers and I look forward to seeing high quality British pork in Mexico very soon.

UK businesses can look forward to the benefits of an ambitious new trade deal with Mexico which we will be negotiating this year, and victories like these are an important step towards our joining the CPTPP which will see our global trade reach new heights.

AHDB’s Director of International Market Development, Dr. Phil Hadley, said:

Today’s announcement is a fantastic boost for the UK pork industry and provides another potential export market for our red meat in a difficult year.

UK pork is recognized and valued around the world for its exceptional quality, high standards of welfare and food safety. This new approval will provide a wealth of opportunities for our exporters and is a testament to the hard work of industry and government to open up new markets as we look to the future.

Pork will join a wide range of animal genetics that the UK already successfully exports to Mexico. Access to bovine embryos has been secured in 2020, joining bovine semen, a market worth over £130,000 a year for the past five years. Therefore, our high quality cattle breeds contribute to the development of Mexican herds. Additionally, we have a well-established export market for sheep genetics from the UK, with award-winning rams and ewes bred in Mexico.

Jonathan Knott, Her Majesty’s Trade Commissioner for Latin America and the Caribbean, said:

I am delighted that British pork can finally enter the Mexican market, after four years of intense negotiations with the Mexican authorities.

Once again, Mexican consumers can benefit from these quality British products – and UK pork exporters have access to this important and growing market. Another success in our campaign to reduce trade barriers between our countries.

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