The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed TD, today announced that a further Irish beef plant has now been approved by the Chinese authorities and listed by GACC, the Chinese General Administration of Customs.
This announcement follows on from the beef market opening in 2018 and the six Irish beef plants that had already been approved for export. It comes in advance of the Ministerial Trade Mission to China in May.
The Minister noted:
"I am very pleased that the Chinese officials in GACC have been able to complete this part of the registration process."
The Minister said:
"This is a testament to my department’s work in pursuing market access through technical, diplomatic and political channels. Increasing market opportunities for our exporters is a key component of the Food Wise 2025 strategy and our response to Brexit."
The Minister added:
"This will bring to twelve the number of Irish meat plants, excluding Coldstores, which are approved to export to China – seven beef plants and five pigmeat plants. The geographic spread of these plants, with knock on benefits to our farmers all across the country, is also notable. My focus is now on getting additional beef plants approved and I will also try to progress sheepmeat access to China as part of the Trade Mission there next month."
Notes to the Editor:
Total Irish agri-food trade exports to China reached almost €795 million last year. China is now our fifth largest market overall. China was the third largest dairy export market and the second largest pigmeat export market. China is also a growing market for seafood and other food and drink exports. (CSO trade statistics)
Beef exports commenced in 2018 and were around €2.8 million (1,400 tonnes) (CSO trade statistics). There is significant scope for greater levels of export with additional plant approvals.
According to USDA forecasts China is expected to consume over 8.5 million tonnes of beef in 2018. This is more than any other country outside the USA and almost 4% ahead of 2017 consumption levels.