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NI food and drinks industry sales continue to rise

The Northern Ireland food and drinks industry is worth around £4,510m per year and sales are continuing to rise according to a government report.

The figures, which cover 2013, show an increase of almost 7% on the previous year.

And provisional figures for 2014 show the upward trend is continuing.

Beef, lamb and mutton, milk and dairy products are the biggest sectors, accounting for around half of turnover.

It is estimated that industry sales for 2014 will be more than £4,770m.

Around 43% of total sales - £1,941m worth of goods - was sold to Great Britain.

Northern Ireland companies also sold £705m worth of products to the Republic of Ireland.

The statistics are part of the report on the Northern Ireland food and drinks processing sector, published by the Department of Agriculture.

It estimates that in 2013 the food and drink industry contributed around 3.8% of Northern Ireland's total gross value added.

The number of people directly employed in the sector increased by more than 1,000 to 21,354 what are known as full-time employee equivalents in 2013.


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