US lifts long-standing ban on British lamb

The US has confirmed its ban on the imports of British lamb has been lifted
Ewe with lamb
US lifts ban on British lamb

A ban that prevented British lamb from being exported to the US for decades has been lifted.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson made the announcement during his visit with President Joe Biden at the Whitehouse yesterday (September 22).

The United States has banned British lamb imports since 1989, following the first outbreaks of BSE, known as mad cow disease.

And a similar ban on British beef imports, imposed in 1996, was lifted in September last year.

But despite the news, prospects of a UK-US FTA appears to be off the cards.

The UK produces world class lamb to the highest environmental and animal welfare standards, and frankly this ban should have been lifted a very long time ago.

CLA Deputy President Mark Tufnell

Mark Tufnell, Deputy President of the CLA, said:

“This is a welcome move, and not before time. The UK produces world class lamb to the highest environmental and animal welfare standards, and frankly this ban should have been lifted a very long time ago.

“Nevertheless, putting lamb back on the US market will be worth around £37m for UK producers in the next 5 years. Perhaps more importantly, it shows the UK Government is serious about opening up new markets for our farmers and there is every reason to believe American consumers will wish to import lamb, beef and other products in ever greater quantities.”

There is no indication yet of when the US will start accepting lamb and beef products from the UK, and an official announcement has not been made.

Key contact:

Joel Holt
Joel Holt National Communications Manager