NCBA applauds reopening of Hong Kong to US beef
The National Cattlemen's Beef Association appreciates the efforts of the Administration on the announcement today that Hong Kong has fully reopened its market for U.S. beef. NCBA president, Bob McCan, a cattleman from Victoria, Texas says this is not only great news for cattlemen and women, but also a strong assurance that the interlocking safeguards put in place are working to build international market demand.
"As U.S. beef producers, we produce the best beef in the world," said McCan. "The strong system of interlocking safeguards and protocols our industry put in place over 10 years ago have assured consumers, both domestically and abroad, of the safety of our product."
Under the new terms, Hong Kong will permit the import of the full range of U.S. beef and beef products, consistent with access prior to December 2003. The new terms become effective today. Previously, only deboned beef from all cattle and certain bone-in beef from cattle less than 30 months of age could be shipped from the U.S. to Hong Kong.
"Cattle producers had a major victory in Paris last year, when the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) upgraded our risk status to negligible risk, the lowest risk standard, recognizing our strong commitment to beef safety," said McCan. "And we applauded the USDA/APHIS in the finalization of the comprehensive BSE rule, which showed our trading partners and the world that we stand behind internationally-accepted science. This has brought the U.S. beef industry to the point now where we are exporting more than $6 billion of beef annually."
In 2013, Hong Kong imported more than $823 million in U.S. beef and in the first four months of 2014 they have imported more than $307 million.
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