Bord Bia secures EU funding for organic beef and lamb campaign

Falling prices paid to beef farmers is what has led to the current dispute

In 2024, Bord Bia will run seven EU co-funded campaigns with a combined lifetime value of €16.5 million



8 December 2023

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Bord Bia has won two new EU contracts to promote organic EU beef and lamb and a separate campaign to promote EU mushrooms, the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine has announced.

The combined value of the two campaigns is €5.7 million over three years. This comprises €3.96 million in EU funding and €1.73 million from Bord Bia and industry funding.

The organic campaign will invest €2.7 million (including VAT) in promoting organic beef and lamb in Austria, Belgium, Germany and Sweden, while the mushroom campaign will see €3 million (including VAT) allocated to promoting mushrooms across the UK.

“This will be the first EU co-funded campaign for organic beef and lamb and comes at a pivotal time for the sector, as we look to increase market demand in key markets,” said Jim O’Toole, Bord Bia chief executive, welcoming the additional funding support from the EU.

“The domestic market is the most important market for organic horticulture, dairy and eggs, and we have recently invested in a €1 million organic campaign here in Ireland,” O’Toole added. “Nearly two thirds of Irish organic beef is destined for export markets, while half of organic lamb is currently sold overseas. This new funding will ensure we can support the development of four export markets for organic beef and lamb, identified by Bord Bia as having the greatest growth potential.”

The business to business focused organic beef and lamb campaign aims to raise awareness of the positive attributes of organic beef and lamb, while increasing trade recognition of the EU organic logo.

Germany is currently Ireland’s largest market for both organic beef and lamb, while Belgium is the second largest market for organic Irish lamb. According to Bord Bia research*, Sweden and Austria both have strong consumer demand for organic produce coupled with a reliance on imports.

“Due to the Irish mushroom sector’s reliance on the UK – owing to the short shelf life of the product – it is exposed to trade fluctuations in the market. The campaign therefore aims to bolster demand by encouraging greater consumption of mushrooms among UK consumers through a range of consumer marketing activity,” O’Toole added.

Over 85% of mushrooms grown in Ireland are destined for the UK market with over 43,000 tonnes, valued at €106 million, exported to the UK in 2022.

In 2024, Bord Bia will run seven separate EU co-funded campaigns across Ireland, the UK, Europe, South East Asia, China and the USA. In addition to promoting mushrooms and organic beef and lamb, the current EU campaigns are promoting dairy, potatoes, fruit and vegetables, and beef and lamb. The combined value of these seven campaigns is €16.5 million over their three year duration.

*(Source: Bord Bia research: Opportunities and barriers for Irish organic produce (2021); Organic Markets: Sweden and Denmark – 2022)



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