Volumes of sheepmeat exported from Ireland to the UK in October 2015 increased by 7% to 500t compared to the same month in 2014, according to AHDB.

The organisation for the English cattle and sheep industry said that volumes increased 23% compared to October 2014.

According to AHDB, this increase is following much larger volumes of sheepmeat being imported from New Zealand.

Volumes imported in the month were at 4,700t almost a quarter more than the same month in 2014, it states, which follows a tightening of domestic sheepmeat production during October, compared to the year earlier.

The majority of the increase came from New Zealand, with volumes up by more than a half on the previous year at 3,200t, AHDB states.

The largest gains were for bone-in and boneless frozen cuts of lamb, which were up by 117% and 52% respectively, according to AHDB.

However, the volumes of chilled products, traditionally destined for retail, were mixed, it states.

It said that shipments of boneless chilled cuts increased by 27%, while volumes of bone-in chilled cuts fell by 26%.

AHDB said that this meant that the share of total imports to the UK coming from New Zealand increased to 67%

Shipments from Australia in October fell by 11% to 800t, reducing the share of UK imports coming from Australia to 16%.

While the volume of overall imports to the UK increased sharply in October the average unit value of shipments fell, with the overall import value of sheepmeat to the UK up by 8% at £17.5m, according to AHDB.

This leaves overall volumes of sheepmeat imported to the UK in the first 10 months of the year 2% below the same period in 2014 at 78,500t, it states.

According to AHDB, the data regarding exports from the UK remains clouded with uncertainty and may not reflect their true level.

AHDB states that the data shows that exports from the UK fell by 30% in October to 6,400t.