BRAZILIAN BUYERS are back in the market for British genetics for the first time since the blight of BSE stopped exports.

Five breeders were taken on a tour of Charolais cattle in England by the English Beef and Lamb Executive (EBLEX).

Their travels took them to farms in Oxfordshire, Hertfordshire, Leicestershire Lincolnshire, Dorset, Devon, Buckinghamshire, Northamptonshire and Hampshire as well as to an AI stud in the West Country.

“Brazil is a massive market in terms of volumes of semen imports, and it has been very annoying that we haven‘t been able to ride with it,” said the Meat and Livestock Commission‘s livestock export manager, Henry Lewis.

The Brazilians, representing an AI company and a breeding society, are expected to order thousands of samples worth £10,000s in coming months.

Their Charolais herd is based on British genetic material, but they have not bought much since the 1970s.

“It is not a high margin market, but the influx of income from Brazil is very welcome for British companies, especially as CAP reform bites.

“Markets for breeding animals into Europe will return next year. We haven‘t explored as well as we could the possibility of commercially-reared purebred breeding animals for restocking.”