Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Hong Kong event showcases UK meat products

Last week saw thousands of visitors attend the largest food and hospitality trade show in the Asia-Pacific region, which provided the ideal platform for the biggest ever contingent of UK meat firms to showcase their products.

EBLEX, BPEX and UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) were joined at HOFEX in Hong Kong by 18 companies that deal in beef, lamb and pork to highlight what the UK has to offer and attend a reception at the British Consulate.

During the event, there was a visit from both the Consul General Caroline Wilson and Barbara Woodward, Director General, Economic and Consular at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

At a reception held at the end of the first day, the two VIP guests stressed the importance of events like this to help develop exports from the UK. Their views were echoed by EBLEX and BPEX export manager Jean-Pierre Garnier, who said the show attracts buyers from across Asia and that Hong Kong is a very important trading centre which we wish to develop further.

Hong Kong is a very important market for Britain – in 2011, UK export of goods there were valued at £5.062 billion, a 20.5 per cent increase on the previous year. It was the UK’s 13th largest export market in 2011, representing 1.7 per cent of total UK exports. It is also the UK’s third largest export market in Asia Pacific, behind Mainland China and India. Around 4.2 per cent of UK exports to Hong Kong are re-exported to Mainland China. Hong Kong is the UK’s 14th largest import market, valued at £7.326 billion. UK imports from Hong Kong represent 1.8 per cent of total imports and 8.6 per cent of imports from Asia Pacific.

Hong Kong is also extremely wealthy, so while there is scope for exporting products such as offal, there is the potential for a great deal of growth in premium products. The stand at HOFEX covered both ends of the market with everything from top quality beef and lamb to sausages, jerky and pork scratchings.

Opportunities for exports to the Far East remain incredibly attractive and events like HOFEX provide the ideal platform for us to shine the spotlight on what we can deliver. EBLEX continues to work towards full market access in the region and the huge potential returns it offers English beef and lamb producers.

EBLEX & BPEX export manager Jean-Pierre Garnier with Barbara Woodward, Director General, Economic and Consular at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office

The reception at HOFEX

EBLEX & BPEX export manager Jean-Pierre Garnier with Consul General, Caroline Wilson (left) and Barbara Woodward, Director General, Economic and Consular at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (right)