A new brand for Irish beef in the US, similar to the hugely successful Kerrygold brand for Irish butter, is unlikely to happen, according to the Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney.

Speaking in the US this week, he said the move which had been mooted by some in the agri-food sector is unlikely due to key fundamental differences between the products.

“Certainly the impression that I get is that most of the dairy products (in particularly butters) and beef are two different branded products,” he said.

“We are exporting a very high-end butter product on a Kerrygold label. We do that all over the world and the US is one of the fastest growing markets for that.”

However, he said beef is a little bit different.

“Most Irish beef is sold business to business as Irish beef he said, it’s only when it’s in restaurants and sometimes in retailers as Irish beef that the consumer really interact with the brand.”

“I think brand ‘Ireland’ is about the strongest band we can develop,” he said.

The Minister said that he will work with Bord Bia and if the market feedback is that there is an appetite for a strong Irish brand product they will look into it.

However, he said at the moment the brand for Irish beef is ‘Ireland’ as opposed to a Kerrygold or any other name.