by Aiken PR
The Dairy Council for Northern Ireland (DCNI) says that the re–opening of borders worldwide has paved the way for completion of its Middle East dairy export programme and the recommencement of its South East Asia programme.
Dr Mike Johnston, DCNI Chief Executive, says the programmes, the first tranche of which generated sales in excess of £24.6m* for local dairy companies, are crucial to the ongoing success of NI dairy internationally.
“These programmes, which receive 80% funding from the EU, have proven very successful and so we are both relieved and pleased that we were able to get them underway again,” said Dr Johnston. “We completed the second tranche of the Middle East programme at the end of August, concluding six years of EU funding spread over two tranches, each of three years. The South East Asia programme recommenced in September and will conclude early in the new year.”
Evaluation of the final Middle East 3–year programme is ongoing, however the Dairy Council is confident that it will achieve similar results to its forerunner.
The programmes, comprised of both inward and outward trade missions, present the opportunity to demonstrate the professionalism and efficiency of Northern Ireland’s dairy industry and for visitors to see for themselves the high EU standards to which the dairy sector here operates, as visitors get to walk the entire NI dairy supply chain.
As well as working closely with local dairy companies to deliver the programmes, DCNI also has welcome support and assistance from DAERA, FSA, CAFRE and the Institute for Global Food Security at QUB.
“The involvement of all of these bodies is invaluable as it helps to highlight the integrity and robustness of our supply chain, which has given customers the confidence and trust to source their dairy products from Northern Ireland and supports our core aim of generating sales and, ultimately, contributing to the wider economy,” continued Dr Johnston. “Building on our long–term relationships aids the development of trading channels between Northern Ireland and international markets.”
The South East Asia programme which recommenced with a visit from a delegation of Japanese buyers in September will continue with a further planned inward mission in December and outward missions to both China and Japan before the end of the year.