UK sheep meat trade increased in 2022

United Kingdom
Published Feb 28, 2023

Tridge summary

Trade figures for the final month of the year showed fresh and frozen primary sheep meat imports at 2,400 tonnes (product weight), 13% above November’s volume, but 39% (1,500 tonnes) below December 2021. Lower imports from New Zealand drove the overall decline, continuing the trend from November.

Original content

For the full year of 2022, imports reached 54,300 tonnes, up 17% (7,700 tonnes) versus 2021. A 12% increase in the average price of these shipments brought the total value to £342 million, up £81 million year-on-year. A near four-fold increase in shipments from Ireland was the main driver of growth, with Ireland overtaking Australia as the second largest supplier of sheep meat to the UK in 2022. Monthly data shows that volumes were above 2021 levels all year. Nearly all product categories saw increases, but particularly fresh boneless product. Total volumes from New Zealand remained relatively stable by contrast (+900 tonnes). The majority of sheep meat imported from New Zealand is frozen (as legs), but as has been documented before, in 2022 the product mix of imports showed a more pronounced swing towards frozen and away from fresh. This was particularly noticeable in March-April, when (frozen) imports typically spike to fulfil Easter demand. Total imports from New Zealand did ...
Source: EuroMeat
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