The General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine held talks with the US Department of Agriculture and the Office of the United States Trade Representative to resume the imports of beef from cattle up to 30 months old. The talks were held during the 2013 US-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade in November, Chen Xitong, spokesman for the quality watchdog, said during a media conference…Full article: China Daily Nov 2013

Key point

  • China banned U.S. beef in 2003 (mad cow disease), but technically reinstated imports in 2006. However, U.S. exporters are upset that sanitary certificates for beef from cattle up to 30 months old are not being issued in a timely manner.

ChinaAg Comment

  • From 2006 to 2008, Chinese beef imports incrementally increased on average by 33% each year, jumping from 48,926 MTs to 86,408 MTs. In 2009, imports dramatically increased by 66% or to 143,708 MTs. In 2010 and 2011, imports hovered around 146,000 MTs per year, but shot up in 2012 (Jan-Oct) to 165,737 MTs. From 2006 to 2012 (Jan-Oct), the value of Chinese beef imports rose from US$169 million to US$708 million, equating to approximately US$3,400 per MT in 2006 and US$4,400 per MT in 2012.
  • Brazil has been to the top supplier of beef to the China, but the U.S. has emerged as a solid secondary supplier. However, nearly all imports of U.S. beef enter through Hong Kong or Macao due to a import ban by mainland China. Other noteworthy Chinese beef suppliers include Australia, New Zealand, Urugugay, Argentina, and Canada.

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