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Benefits for NZ Grass Fed Beef in Japan

09 November 2009

NEW ZEALAND - New Zealand’s increased profile in Japan will have positive spinoffs for New Zealand beef and lamb, according to Meat & Wool New Zealand Chairman, Mike Petersen.

Mr Petersen, back from the Japan New Zealand Partnership Forum and other industry meetings, said the spotlight on New Zealand had been created with the high profile business forum involving Prime Minister John Key and senior ministers and New Zealand industry leaders. That meeting had been followed by the All Blacks and Wallabies Bledisloe Cup match, popular with the Japanese people.

“The Japan New Zealand Partnership Forum was again very successful in building stronger partnerships between business interests in both countries. The underlying theme of food safety and security was at the forefront of discussions and continues to dominate Asia with forecasts of global population reaching 9.5 billion people by 2050.

“There was wide recognition that New Zealand farmers are in the box seat when it comes to capitalising on this opportunity, with global food demand set to soar on the back of the population and strong income growth in this region."

Japan is New Zealand’s second largest beef export market by value and fourth largest by volume. In the 2008/09 production year, New Zealand exported 28,873 tonnes of chilled and frozen beef to Japan. This was worth $190.4 million.

Japan is primarily a grain-fed beef market but certain groups, including middle-aged and older women concerned about their husbands’ and their own health and mothers wanting to feed their children nutritious foodstuffs, are more receptive to the health qualities of New Zealand grass-fed product.

“Okinawa is a key niche market within Japan for New Zealand grass-fed beef. It is estimated that New Zealand has at least a 30 per cent share of the imported beef market in Okinawa compared to total market share in Japan of seven per cent.

“There is strong support among a number of key retail and food service outlets for New Zealand grass fed beef, with the single biggest retail user of chilled grass-fed beef in Japan being one of the two largest supermarket chains in Okinawa. It was great to see successful joint venture promotions in action, utilising levies and industry funding to increase demand and raise the profile of our beef.”

TheCattleSite News Desk



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