Buyers of imported lamb can only watch wistfully as New Zealand's currency plunges. Despite the kiwi dollar's slide to beyond $NZ3.60 against sterling, at least 40c weaker than last autumn, retail prices for New Zealand lamb in the UK have ended the marketing season with much bigger year-on-year gains than the home-produced commodity. Buoyant returns enjoyed by New Zealand meat exporters in other markets, notably the US beef trade, indirectly support prices for product reaching this corner of the world. Meat price inflation is becoming a politically sensitive issue within New Zealand, one of many signals suggesting the new killing season now starting will not provide many bargains for British customers. {{MEAT }}

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