Canadian government reveals beef progress following visit to China

By Georgi Gyton

- Last updated on GMT

The Chinese government is to work with Canada on the possibility of increasing beef exports
The Chinese government is to work with Canada on the possibility of increasing beef exports

Related tags: Minister gerry ritz, Han chinese, Canada, China

Canadian Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz announced that China has formally agreed to work with Canadian officials on providing access for Canadian bone-in beef derived from animals that are less than 30 months of age.

The breakthrough came after Ritz held a bilateral trade meeting with the Chinese government this week. Access will also be discussed for live cattle.

Ritz met with Han Chanfu, China’s Minister for Agriculture, as well as Wei Chuanzhong, China’s Vice Minister of General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ).

According to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AFFC), once access for sub-30-month bone-in beef is fully implemented, the Canadian beef industry estimates the Chinese market for its beef will grow to CA$240m annually. The market for live cattle is estimated to total CA$150m.

Ritz also signed two protocols with Wei – one to secure access for perennial grass Timothy hay to China, and the other to "modernise our countries’ live swine protocol, reflecting recent animal health and disease control science-based approaches".

Industry expects the latter protocol will boost Canadian live swine competitiveness in China and result in sales of up to CA$11m annually, said AAFC.

Ritz said: "The expanded market access we agreed to will ensure our agriculture producers and processors are competitive in the lucrative Chinese market. By promoting Canada’s food and agriculture sector as a reliable and safe supplier of choice for Chinese consumers, we are making sure our agriculture industry will continue to drive the Canadian economy."

While in China, Ritz also delivered a speech at the World Meat Congress in Beijing.

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