UK sheep meat trade remains lower in June

Wednesday, 18 August 2021

As of January 2021 data, the way HMRC collects trade data has changed, which will be reflected in the trade statistics. Comparisons between this and historic data should be treated with caution, and may well be subject to future revisions.

During June, UK exports of fresh and frozen sheep meat were 37% lower compared to the same month a year ago, according to data from HMRC. A total of 4,600 tonnes was shipped during the month, 5% less than in May.

Shipments to the EU were 35% lower year-on-year and 7% lower than in May, at 4,300 tonnes. The main drivers of decline were lower exports to France, Ireland, Germany and Italy. Average GB farmgate lamb prices were above French prices for the majority of June, which may have contributed to lower volumes. GB prices have been below French prices since the end of June, so it will be interesting to see if exports show any recovery.

UK sheep meat exports for the first six months of 2021 totalled 29,000 tonnes, 24% lower compared to the same period a year ago.

On the imports side, the UK shipped in 4,200 tonnes of fresh and frozen sheep meat in June, 5% less than a year ago and 12% lower than in May. Volumes from New Zealand were 16% lower year-on-year at 2,800 tonnes, while shipments from Australia grew to 700 tonnes. Year-to-date UK sheep meat imports totalled 27,700 tonnes, down 17% on the same period a year ago.

For a forward look at UK sheep meat trade and what that might mean for markets, read our Lamb Market Outlook.

Image of staff member Hannah Clarke

Hannah Clarke

Senior Analyst (Red Meat)

See full bio

Sign up for regular updates

You can subscribe to receive Beef and Lamb market news straight to your inbox. Simply fill in your contact details on our online form.

Visit the Keep in touch page

While AHDB seeks to ensure that the information contained on this webpage is accurate at the time of publication, no warranty is given in respect of the information and data provided. You are responsible for how you use the information. To the maximum extent permitted by law, AHDB accepts no liability for loss, damage or injury howsoever caused or suffered (including that caused by negligence) directly or indirectly in relation to the information or data provided in this publication.

All intellectual property rights in the information and data on this webpage belong to or are licensed by AHDB. You are authorised to use such information for your internal business purposes only and you must not provide this information to any other third parties, including further publication of the information, or for commercial gain in any way whatsoever without the prior written permission of AHDB for each third party disclosure, publication or commercial arrangement. For more information, please see our Terms of Use and Privacy Notice or contact the Director of Corporate Affairs at  © Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board. All rights reserved.