UK’s red meat exports top $2.09 billion in unprecedented year

The UK’s red meat exports valued at $2.09B despite COVID-19 shocks and increases in domestic demand.


During an unprecedented and challenging year for exports the UK has shipped 660,000 tonnes of beef, pork and sheep meat around the world – down just 3,777 tonnes in 2019’s record year, with the overall value increasing marginally.


According to the latest data from Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs, shipments of pig meat, including offal, increased by almost 6% to 400,000 tonnes – worth $912MM compared to $849MM million in 2019.


Exports of beef and offal reduced slightly from 184,000 tonnes in 2019 to 166,000 tonnes, worth $632MM to the sector. And while sheep meat and offal shipments dropped by seven per cent to 93,600 tonnes, the value rose by nine per cent from $569MM in 2019 to $623MM.


The latest figures are a testament to the UK and its red meat exporters in overcoming the many challenges of 2020.


When you consider the difficult trading year, we have had with the run-up to Brexit and the COVID-19 pandemic, these full-year results are incredibly strong – with our pork exports even increasing in value by 7%.


We have also seen an increase in domestic demand for red meat, which has slightly impacted the volumes available for exporting, including to the United States for the first time in over 24 years.  We are happy to say that with all of this in mind, 2020 has delivered some encouraging and positive results for our red meat exports.