To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps she is taking to help dairy farmers to export more milk products.
Growing UK food exports is a key Defra priority. In 2013 Defra and UKTI launched the ‘UK Food and Drink International Action Plan’. Since the Plan’s launch, 2,500 companies have received UKTI support for exporting, contributing to £305 million of export business won.
The Secretary of State recently visited China, and was accompanied by a range of UK dairy businesses who met Chinese buyers, distributors and retailers. In 2014 the Government championed British food and drink in Dubai (Gulfood), New York (Fancy Foods), Paris (SIAL) and at the Liverpool International Business Festival. We also showcased British food and drink at the Commonwealth Games and Tour de France.
In 2013 we opened 112 markets for animals and animal products contributing to an increase in exports to non-EU markets of £179 million to £1.35 billion. In 2014 we opened over 100 markets including markets for dairy in Madagascar, Morocco and Serbia. We continue to work with industry to extend market access for UK produce.
UK dairy exports now stand at record levels. In nominal terms, the total value of dairy exports has increased by 62% since 2009, driven by price and volume changes. Last year our dairy exports reached £1.3 billion.