Local beef plants among those approved for Chinese markets

Longford Leader Reporter

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Further to the recent news on new beef plant approvals to China, the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed TD has confirmed that all formalities have now been completed, and 14 additional beef plants (plus two coldstores) have been listed on the GACC (General Administration of Customs in China) website, allowing trade from these plants to commence.

With 14 further beef plants now approved, the total now stands at 21, of which Minister Creed is delighted.

He 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,”

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Ireland first gained access to the Chinese beef market in April 2018, 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.

The additional fourteen plants (+ 2 cold stores) approved are: Kildare Chilling, Euro Farm Foods, ABP Cahir, Dawn Meats Rathdowney, Kepak Athleague, ABP Waterford, Dawn Meats Grannagh, ABP Bandon, ABP Rathkeale, Dawn Meats Ballyhaunis Ashbourne Meat Processors Roscrea, Ashbourne Meat Processors Naas and Kepak , Ballymahon and Kepak Kilbeggan.

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