Resumption of Irish beef exports to China

Beef exports to China are set to resume, Agriculture Secretary Charlie McConalogue and Minister of State Martin Heydon have confirmed.

eef shipments to China have been suspended after the Ministry of Agriculture confirmed a single case of atypical BSE in May 2020.

This isolated case was detected by the Department’s surveillance program, did not enter the food chain and posed no risk to human health. Atypical BSE occurs naturally and sporadically in all cattle populations at a very low frequency and is not considered a public health risk.

Nonetheless, beef exports were immediately suspended as a precautionary measure in line with the bilateral trade protocol agreed with the General Administration of Customs of China (GACC).

Secretary McConalogue said: “Negotiations to resume access to beef have been a top priority for my Department for the last two and a half years. My officials, along with colleagues from the Irish Embassy in Beijing, have been in constant contact with the Chinese authorities since the suspension began. They provided the necessary technical information for the evaluation by Chinese experts. As a result of my communication with my counterpart in charge of GACC, earlier this year our officials entered into further bilateral talks to complete restoring access to beef based on scientific principles.

“Ireland’s reputation as a global exporter of high quality beef depends on meeting strict animal health and food safety standards. As a large food exporter, we are always very aware of the needs of our customers. China’s decision to resume Irish beef imports on the same terms as before is a clear vote of confidence in the production of our beef sector.

“This decision is a huge vote of confidence in our beef sector and in our dedicated mother and cattle breeders who produce a world class product. I look forward to seeing the value of the Chinese market grow in the period ahead to reward the efforts of everyone involved.”

Minister of State Martin Heydon TD, who is also responsible for Market Development, welcomed today’s news as a positive development for the Irish beef sector.

Minister Heydon said: “Prior to the suspension, Irish beef exports to China were on an overall upward trend and I am confident we can quickly regain momentum and gain market share there.

“I would like to take on the role of the Irish Ambassador to China, Dr. Ann Derwin, the current and former Agricultural Attachés and the entire team at the Irish Embassy in Beijing for their efforts, at every opportunity a well-founded case on the safety of Irish beef exports. I would also like to acknowledge Bord Bia Shanghai’s work in communicating the quality and sustainability of Irish beef to key retail customers in China.” Resumption of Irish beef exports to China

Fry Electronics Team

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