The ABP Food Group, which has processing plants close to the towns of Nenagh and Cahir, in Co Tipperary, will be the first European company to supply beef to the US in 17 years, with first shipments expected to commence in March 2015.
The is the first deal to supply Irish beef to the American market, since a 15 year ban was lifted just late last year.
According to ABP, this deal was facilitated by Pallas Foods a subsidiary of Sysco Corporation and will see ABP supply Sysco Metro New York and Sysco Boston with beef, which will be sold to restaurants and steak houses initially, thus providing grass fed, hormone free Irish beef onto the plates of US consumers.
Sysco is an American multinational corporation involved in both the marketing and distribution of food products to hospitality businesses such as restaurants, hotels and inns, including healthcare and educational facilities and boasting 194 distribution facilities and 425,000 customers.
For their part, ABP Group is one of Europe’s leading privately owned food processors, with operations spanning Ireland, the UK and Continental Europe controlled by its founder Larry Goodman. Here in Ireland ABP operate six large beef-processing facilities and is one of Europe’s leading beef exporters, while accounting for around a quarter of our national annual animal kill.
The US consumes some 11.5 billion kg of beef each year, 10% of which comes from imports and later today International chefs will cook Irish beef at a special event to be held at a Michelin starred restaurant in Manhattan.
The deal was announced today as part of the trade promotional visit being headed up by the Minister for Agriculture Mr Simon Coveney and Bord Bia.