The Larry Goodman owned ABP Food Group has announced it has secured a new beef deal with Japan.

It says it is the first Irish processor to do so, announcing details that it has signed a contract to supply beef to the Japanese market.

ABP is the first Irish company to sign a major prime beef contract with a Japanese company since a ban in 2000 due to the outbreak of BSE, it says.

The contract, which is valued at over €4million, commences immediately and first deliveries are expected to arrive early in the New Year. Ireland is one of only three European countries with access to the Japanese market.

Speaking about the announcement, Mark Goodman, International Commercial Director, of ABP Food Group said the company is very proud to announce this deal, which means ABP will become the first Irish company to re-start supply to the Japanese market since the BSE ban in 2000.

“Japanese consumers are among the most discerning in the world. Over 60 percent of locally produced beef is Wagyu, so I think its testament to the competitiveness and quality of Ireland’s grass-fed beef offering that we have succeeded in gaining entry to this market.

“Bord Bia has played a major role in assisting us to communicate Ireland’s sustainable, grass-fed hormone free message to Japanese consumers. Our focus now, is to grow the business and build the reputation of premium Irish beef in Japan.”

Last month, ABP Food Group awarded the multi-national exporter of the year award by the Irish Exporters Association.