It seems like the world can’t get away from diseases at the moment. In recent weeks Brazil has been impacted by BSE (see here), which has resulted in a number of countries halting imports of their beef.
In recent days it has now been discovered on a farm in England. The UK was ravaged by mad cow disease in the 1990s. In fact, it was so prevalent that those who lived in the UK in the 1990s (like myself) are still not allowed to give blood in Australia.
Whilst there are not considered to be any risks to the food chain, the world has been on tenterhooks; this still could disrupt their trade as we have seen in Brazil.
The first chart below shows the top 8 destinations for British beef, based on a five-year average (2015-19). Unsurprisingly most of the volume heads into European nations.
The second chart shows the difference in export volume between Australia and Britain. They are a bit of a minnow compared to us.
What these recent animal disease issues show us, is the importance of maintaining strong bio-security protocols to ensure that our product can get into as many destinations as possible.
Australia has been very lucky when it comes to these outbreaks (FMD/ASF/BSE); we need to remain vigilant.