Promising start for cheese exports

Exports of cheese from Britain have increased in the first three months of the year with worldwide sales up 29% to almost £143 million.

Latest figures from the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) show that almost 40,000 tonnes of cheese were exported around the world in the first quarter of 2017 – a rise of 3% compared to the same time last year.

Exports to the EU grew by eight percent – rising to 32,479 tonnes. Asia and Oceania, one of the biggest growth markets, saw exports rise by 36% to 1,798 tonnes.

Lucy Randolph, AHDB’s senior exports manager for dairy, says, “While exports to Europe are still incredibly strong, it is also very encouraging to see non-EU exports have grown since the start of the year. It is important with Brexit that we look further afield for opportunities for our exporters.”

A selection of premium cheeses from Britain is also being promoted in India for the first time this month with shoppers in Delhi being offered tastings in supermarkets as part of a series of promotional events across the city.

In April, cheese from Britain was served up for the first time to chefs, dairy buyers and local media at a tasting session in Hong Kong. Around 65 people attended the event, organised by AHDB Dairy to promote a range of artisan and premium cheeses already available in Hong Kong together with new selections.

And in May, AHDB Dairy exhibited at the National Restaurant Association Show in Chicago – America’s largest annual foodservice trade show as well as Asia’s leading food and hospitality trade show Hofex, in Hong Kong.

Randolph says, “We are in the process of preparing for the Speciality and Fine Food Asia event which takes place in Singapore this month. This promises to be a popular event and will hopefully provide many opportunities for our dairy exporters.”

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