Following the Chinese audit of beef plants in September, 14 further beef plants have recently been approved to export to the Chinese market.
Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed TD, said: “I am delighted that all of the beef plants which were audited in September have now been approved by the Chinese Authorities. There are now no outstanding plant applications.
“This is the strongest endorsement possible of Irish food safety standards. We were the first country in western Europe to achieve access to the Chinese market and now it is clear that our plants are meeting the high and exacting standards of the Chinese authorities. The key ask of industry had been to have more plants approved in order to meet the growing demand coming from the Chinese market. Working together with our meat industry partners, Bord Bia, the Irish Embassy in Beijing and the Chinese Embassy in Dublin, we have achieved this”
Ireland gained access to the Chinese beef market in April 2018 and the latest approvals mean that 21 beef plants are now approved to export to China, increasing Ireland’s ability to supply a growing demand in China for premium quality, safe and sustainably produced beef. China is currently Ireland’s fifth biggest market for agri-food exports and has grown significantly over the years. Total agri-food exports amounted to almost €800 million in 2018. The amount of beef in tonnes exported to China January to August 2019 was 4,651tonnes, a total of €21.4 million.