UK beef will be exported to China for the first time since a ban was implemented following the BSE outbreak 20 years ago.
British beef could be served up on Chinese plates by the end of the year following a multi-million pound export agreement between China and the UK.
Approval was granted on Friday (October 18) by Chinese government officials, who signed a protocol agreement for full access to ship beef from the UK.
UK beef will be exported for the first time in 20 years, marking the end of a ban following the BSE outbreak.
The deal is expected to be worth £230 million over the first five years.
Four beef sites have been cleared to export beef and shipments are expected to arrive by Christmas.
Industry leaders branded the move ‘a triumph’.
AHDB, which has been working in partnership with Defra, Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) and Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales (HCC) for five years to secure the deal, said it was a positive end to a ‘very successful year’ for red meat exports.
International market development director Dr Phil Hadley said: “We continue to work collaboratively with government to create new opportunities for our red meat exports and [this] announcement is a testament to the persistence and hard work of all involved.
“We look forward to seeing the first shipments of beef arrive in China and hope to replicate the success of our pork exports in the beef sector.”