Exporters step back from markets due to border chaos

Auction markets were expecting to feel the impact of border closures at sheep sales this week as demand drops for export weight lambs.

On Sunday (December 20), France shut its border with the UK for 48 hours, meaning no lorries or ferries will sail from the port of Dover.

Ted Ogden, auctioneer at Skipton, said there would be demand for lambs to serve the domestic market but several export focused companies had told them they would no longer require the class of lamb for export.

“We still require sheep. The sales are still going ahead,” he said.

“But people need to know that their expectations may need to change and make their own decisions. Informing them is part of our job as auctioneers. If buyers are wanting more of those lambs we tell them so it seemed right we communicate this.”

 

 

by Alex Black

 

 

Soaring pork exports buck downward trend for UK food and drink

Pork has bucked an otherwise declining trend within the UK food and drink sector to significantly increase export volumes so far this year. 

In terms of export value, pork now lies fifth on the list of UK food and drink products, behind only whisky, chocolate salmon and cheese, according to fresh analysis from the Food and Drink Federation.

Overall, it is a gloomy picture, showing that in third quarter of 2020, UK food and drink exports fell by 11.6% to £5.5bn, compared with the same period in 2019, as both exports to EU and non-EU markets declined. This decrease was largely driven by the impacts of COVID-19, including the closure of hospitality and travel sectors, which has meant a loss of sales into restaurants, cafés, bars and the out-of-home sector across Europe.

In the first nine months to September 2020, food and drink exports fell to £15.2bn (-12.9%) year-on-year. Exports to the majority of the top 20 markets decreased, with sales to Spain falling significantly by -33.8%.

 

by Alistair Driver