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Russia lifts ban on British beef and lamb imports

The decision, which follows last year’s talks between Putin and Cameron, ends years of acrimony

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Russia has agreed to lift a 16-year long ban on importing British beef and lamb, the UK government said on Friday.

The ban, which excluded British farmers from exporting to Russia, was imposed following the 1996 Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) outbreak in the UK. Despite a ban being lifted elsewhere in 2006, the Russian government had maintained its own embargo on imports from the UK.

Prime Minister David Cameron raised the issue with the then Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin during a visit to Moscow last year.

In response, UK Environment Secretary Owen Paterson, said, “British food is recognised around the world for using quality ingredients, for rigorous production standards, and for reliable traceability. This deal is further evidence of international confidence in what British producers have to offer.”

"Our food exports are booming, recently topping £10 billion a year, and this government is doing all it can to open up markets abroad," he said.

Government data reveals the UK food and drink exports rose 9 percent to £18.2 billion.


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