Lithuania to further boost production of halal meat

Girard-Meat-Market-1Vilnius, (IINA) – Lithuania’s Food and Veterinary Service (FVS) has recently stated that the country exported 420 tons of halal meat in 2015, which makes up to 10 percent of the country’s overall beef exports, Global Meat News reported.

According to FVS chief Vidmantas Paulauskas, the country has made significant progress in acquiring certification of production in other states. In 2015, Lithuania established the supply of beef to Lebanon and Egypt, while the largest amount of halal meat was provided to Muslim communities of neighboring countries in the EU.

“Last year we exported 420 ton of beef produced in accordance with the rules of ritual slaughter, including 100t we supplied to Lebanon, 50t to Egypt, and the rest to the EU where it has been sold to religious communities”, Paulauskas said.

The demand for halal meat in Lithuania was on the rise last year due to the inflow of refugees; some districts even faced a deficit in the production.

“Still the sale of halal meat inside the European Union seems to our producers more profitable than delivering it to the Muslim countries due to the more attractive price. This is connected with the lower logistics spends, better-established supply channels, and more attractive market price compared to the countries of the Middle East and North Africa”, said Yanis Palapustas, a representative of the Animal Husbandry Department of Lithuania’s Agricultural Ministry.

FVS representatives were sent to confirm the legitimacy of the country’s producers of halal meat.

“In regard to Muslim countries, we are currently in negotiation with some countries [for opening of the domestic market], including Iran, where the process is almost completed, and Morocco, but our businesses are not interested in this market, probably due to not very appropriate price compared to, for example, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, and Albania”, Paulauskas said.

He added that despite the prices, FVS expects that the halal meat exporting business will grow in the country in coming years.

“[Exports of] 420t of beef is a very good figure for the first year. The ice has been broken”, he said.

Egidijus Mackevicius, head of the Lithuanian Association of Meat Processors, also expressed a similar opinion; he believes that the Arabian Peninsula should be considered a very promising region for meat exports.

He noted that the major problem facing the country in the trial of exporting meat to the Arabian Peninsula was the lack of embassies. He said that the country only has consuls in the region, and they do not have the authority for the process.


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