Ireland stockpiling cheddar in case of no-deal Brexit
Recent trade figures show that Ireland has been stockpiling cheddar in the UK as a safeguard against a no-deal Brexit.
The Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) found that the UK imported over 60,000 tonnes of cheddar from Ireland between January and August, up 16% on the same period in 2017 and worth £164 million.
According to press reports, the increase in imports is the result of Irish processors stockpiling cheddar in the UK as a safeguard against a no-deal Brexit. This will enable them to keep supplying supermarkets without a tariff-related price hike, at least while stocks last. It would also reduce the opportunity for domestic producers to displace Irish supply should trade become more difficult, at least in the short term. Longer term, the potential for the UK to displace imported cheddar will depend on the UK-EU trade relationship, and the level at which the UK sets its WTO tariffs.