Irish beef could soon be on the shelves in China
Significant advances in the development of Irish exports of beef, seafood and thoroughbred horses to China have been made today following a meeting between Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed and Chinese Minister Zhi Shuping in Dublin.
The Chinese Minister, who has responsibility for the Chinese Quarantine and Inspection Service, has been in Ireland since Monday.
This morning’s meeting was the second formal bilateral meeting of the two Ministers and comes after Minister Creed’s discussions with Minister Zhi in Beijing last September.
The progress made follows significant engagement between Irish and Chinese Officials since then culminating in today’s events in Dublin.
With reference to beef access both Ministers signed a formal protocol on beef exports to China that paves the way to access for Irish beef to China.
In order to complete the process to allow Irish beef exporters access to the Chinese market a veterinary health certificate with AQSIQ must be finalised which will be followed by an inspection visit by the Chinese Certification and Accreditation Administration (CNCA) to approve individual processing plants for export.
Beef consumption in China has increased almost six fold between 1990 and 2015 to almost 4 kg per capita and is forecast to increase further over the coming years.
However, Chinese beef production has not kept pace with rising demand and imports are estimated to have increased to more than 1.2 million tonnes in 2016, accounting for around one third of beef consumption.