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NZ’s beef and lamb industry shelling out $2m in effort to attract US consumers

As plant-based diets grow in popularity the meat lobby here is ramping up its push in America to get more people eating New Zealand beef and lamb.

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Six food influencers are being paid to spread the world on social media. Source: 1 NEWS

It's spending about $2 million on a campaign, including bringing out six US food influencers to New Zealand to spread the word on social media.

"People love noodles, it's weird. And dumplings. They are just very photogenic," food influencer Ben Hon told 1 NEWS.

Beef and Lamb New Zealand's paying for New York’s Mr Hon to share his culinary journey with his nearly 56,000 followers.

In the United States, most meat is from animals raised on grain.

Here it's grass-fed, a message the industry wants the influencers to pass on.

"We've got to make sure we are really good at telling our stories, so consumers perceive us as good meat," KPMG’s global head of agribusiness Ian Proudfoot says.

The lobby group is hopeful a trend towards eating less meat could work in its favour.

"When they do choose to eat meat, they are going to want high quality, high welfare, well produced product that New Zealand produces," Beef and Lamb New Zealand’s Hugh Good says.

Meat is one of New Zealand’s top export earners. In 2015, global exports were worth $6.4 billion.