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Exports of Food and Drink

Export Performance 2010

Bord Bia produces detailed annual estimates for the export performance of the Irish food and beverages sector[5] . According to their latest report, export performance was boosted by a more stable consumer environment, somewhat reduced exchange rate pressures, improved relative competitiveness of Irish manufacturers and higher global prices for most agricultural commodities. The strength of this performance is highlighted by the fact that during the first nine months of 2010, food and drink exports accounted for 30% of the growth recorded in total merchandise exports. All major categories recorded increased export revenues in 2010.  The strongest growth was in Dairy, which jumped by more than €300 million or 17 per cent, helped by stronger prices, higher production in Ireland and the release of SMP and butter from storage.  This means that Dairy products and ingredients remain Ireland¿s largest agri-food export sector, representing 29% of agri-food exports by value.  Meat and livestock exports were almost €200 million higher while beverage and prepared food exports recorded growth of €130 million and €100 million respectively.  For the year, it is estimated that export sales expanded by 11% to reach €7.9bn.

[5]Performance & Prospects. Bord Bia Export Review and Outlook 2010/2011


Figure 5.12 shows the composition of Irish Agri-food exports using percentages.  Once again it is clear that dairy products and ingredients have a dominant position.  The export value of prepared foods grew by 8% and now represents 17.7% of Irish agri-foods exports - at €1.4bn, the third largest category. Beef, still in second place, represented 19% or €1.5 billion of exports, also an 8% increase on 2009, while beverages increased by 12% to represent 15.1% of agri-food exports at €1.2bn. Together, these four sectors represent over 80% of Irish agri-food exports.