Ireland with secure beef access to China
Bord Bia signalled that it was optimistic about securing market access to the growing Asian meat market China, which is already the world's second-biggest beef importer. Bord Bia's Shanghai-based trade marketing specialist Conor O'Sullivan said that with rising incomes and urbanisation, the appetite for beef among Chinese consumers is growing faster than any other protein.
Already China imports around 15pc of the beef it eats, and in three years it will be 20pc. That is just the start as China is currently not a big beef eater and it is realistic that beef consumption would grow to mirror other Asian countries such as Japan and Korea. That is really important as for every extra kilogram Chinese consumers eat, that means they will have to find nearly 1.4 million tonnes of beef.
Unlike the traditional shop retail format, for China its clear to see that the opportunity for Irish beef in restaurant chains and through e-commerce channels where consumers are ordering for online deliveries is a possible way. The big Chinese technology companies were already moving to take over the traditional shop chains as online buying begins to take hold in the food sector as also by opening a new kind of retail, with fresh supermarkets like Hema run by Alibaba or 7Fresh by the biggest Alibaba competitor in China, Jindong.