The UK government has launched a £1 million programme to boost UK dairy exports.

The New Dairy Export Programme will provide a wide range of targeted support for businesses through education sessions on how to boost exports and target new markets and trade promotion activity, including an inward buyer trade mission and a UK Dairy Showcase.

It will also provide specialist resources in priority markets dedicated to supporting dairy exports and market intelligence support to help businesses exploit overseas opportunities.

The dairy sector exported more than £2 billion of products to 135 countries in 2022.

The move follows a commitment by the Prime Minister of £1 million to the dairy industry at the Farm to Fork Summit hosted at 10 Downing Street in May, with Exports Minister Lord Offord making the announcement during a visit to Lye Cross Farm in Bristol.

Lord Offord said: “Growing the agri, food and drink sector is key to growing our economy, and I am delighted to launch the Dairy Export Programme which will help businesses grasp exciting new opportunities around the world.

“Last year our dairy exporters sold £2 billion of products to markets worldwide, and the work we are doing to strike up new trade deals will only see that figure rise further and move us forward in the race to £1 trillion of exports by 2030.”

The UK government hailed the dairy industry as being “among the best in the world and is renowned for being ambitious and innovative” adding small to medium businesses make up a large proportion of the sector.

AHDB Chief Executive Tim Rycroft said: “International trade remains critical to the sector. Export development is at the heart of what AHDB does, showcasing our high-quality produce at international trade shows and hosting inward missions for key international buyers.

“We welcome today’s announcement of additional government support for the dairy sector and will continue to work collaboratively with government and industry to deliver impactful activities and help maximise global opportunities for our levy payers.

“It will support our ambition to help increase market access and international sales by championing the reputation of UK products overseas, as well as encouraging more businesses to export.”

NFU Dairy Board Chair Michael Oakes added that global demand for dairy is “set to rise significantly and the UK should be leading the way when it comes to the trade of safe, high-quality and sustainable UK dairy products.”

This new £1m programme shows how industry and government collaboration can help drive UK dairy exports, target new markets and bolster our exporting strength. With the global demand for dairy set to rise significantly, the UK should be leading the way when it comes to the trade of safe, high-quality and sustainable UK dairy products.