CHINA TAKES FIRST STEP TO RESUMING IMPORTS OF U.S. BEEF
China’s Ministry of Agriculture and General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine announced last week the ban on imports of U.S. beef has been lifted. Reports are China will begin accepting U.S. beef from animals less than 30 months of age.
U.S. Meat Export Federation Chief Executive Officer Philip Seng said while the announcement is an important first step in the process of resuming beef exports to the world’s largest consumer market, technical negotiations must be completed before U.S. suppliers begin shipping product.
U.S. beef officially has been out of the Chinese market since 2003. According to NCBA Director of International Trade Kent Bacus, China already is the world’s second largest buyer of beef, and with a growing middle class, presents “tremendous” export opportunities for the U.S. beef industry. China is home to one-fifth of the entire global population, with a middle class larger than the entire U.S. population.