Live exports to Turkey get green light

Turkey has given the green light to Ireland for live exports, it has been announced.

A statement from the Department of Agriculture said tonight that the Minister for Agriculture is pleased that Ireland has been listed by the Turkish Ministry for Agriculture as a country from which live bovines may be imported.

“This follows pro active and detailed engagement by his department with its Turkish counterparts and an inspection by a Turkish veterinary delegation in May.”

The Department is awaiting a formal confirmation from the Turkish authorities, both in relation to access and any conditions attaching to certification.

It is understood the immediate requirement in Turkey would be for live exports in the form of younger stock, mainly bull weanlings up to 12 months of age and up to 300kg, from the suckler herd.

The cattle will be bought in Ireland at 250kg to allow for six weeks of lairage and shipping time, it is believed.

Also Read: Irish cattle exports to Turkey hinge on Bluetongue-free status – Bord Bia

In 2015, EU exports of live cattle showed an increase of close to 60% year-on-year, mainly thanks to the re-opening of the Turkish market.

A total of 178,000 cattle were exported live from Ireland last year, worth approximately €135m, figures from Bord Bia show.

Lebanon and Turkey remained the two main destinations for European live cattle and Libya is third.

Turkey imported a total of 380,000 head of live cattle in 2015, the majority from South America. France exported over 120,000 head to the Turkish market in 2015.