Beef exports to the US start up after 20-year ban

Zoe Bagnall
Content and PR Executive | Business West
2nd October 2020

UK beef producers can now export their product to the US after more than 20 years of restrictions have been lifted.  

The ban was brought in due to the outbreak of BSE among British Livestock in 1996 but after American experts inspected farms last year, market access was granted in March 2020. 

The US is already the South West’s top export partner, accounting for around one fifth of all the South West’s goods exports.   

The government has predicted that this could result in a £66 million boost to UK beef producers over the next five years.  

The news comes at a time when the UK is negotiating a free trade deal with the US, which Government analysis shows could deliver a £284 million boost to the South West economy, including for the South West’s specialist dairy producers and agricultural industry.  

International Trade Secretary Liz Truss, who is leading the talks with the US, said: "This could be just the tip of the iceberg. The free trade deal we are negotiating with the US will create a host of export opportunities for British agriculture. We are seeking an ambitious and high standards agreement that benefits farmers and delivers for consumers." 

Paul Shand, Head of Trade at the Department for International Trade (DIT) in the South West said: 

“This development is great news for South West beef producers looking to export, as dairy produce from the region is recognised for its high quality.

“International opportunities such as this are well and truly in reach for ambitious firms. 

“We’ve got a team of dedicated international trade advisers to guide food producers throughout the whole exporting process.

“I’d encourage businesses looking for support, whether it’s relating to international branding, overseas legislation or forging new international relationships, to get in touch.” 

For further information on DIT’s exporting support and international opportunities, visit To discuss your export options with one of DIT’s International Trade Advisers contact 01275 774 456.  

DIT’s regional delivery partner, Business West, is dedicated to supporting South West companies seeking opportunities in the US and who may need export documentation support and advice. 

It’s important to check whether any special documentation is required overseas to satisfy local regulations. Business West’s new Chamber Customs service will also offer much needed assurance that goods will pass through borders unhindered. Follow this link to find out more and register your interest. 

  • Find out how to get started

    Start trading overseas with our comprehensive support to help you every step of the way.

    Contact our team on 01275 774 456

Do you want to join the conversation?

Sign up here