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Gaining Access to China Could Be a Big Boost for U.S. Beef Exports in 2016

Wed, 10 Feb 2016 14:25:19 CST

Gaining Access to China Could Be a Big Boost for U.S. Beef Exports in 2016

The Chinese are buying a lot of beef internationally now, but they aren’t buying it from the United States. The preferred supplier looks to be Australia. U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) President and CEO Phil Seng said the U.S. continues to struggle getting market access since the market was closed after a cow was discovered with Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) in the U.S. in 2003, which led China to ban U.S. beef. One of the key demands from China looks to be the traceability of U.S. beef. Seng said traceability was one of the original 22 demands from the Chinese government. Nearly all the demands have gone away, except traceability.

Under the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE), the US is considered a negligible risk. This means the U.S. has a credible traceability system that is recognized by OIE. Seng said the U.S. is working to get China more assurances on the voluntary traceability system and he is hopeful the Chinese will come to the U.S. with their audit team to look at packing plants and the record keeping process.

“So, I think we have a great story to tell and hopefully the sooner we get them here and get this thing going the better, because if you want to really make a big boost in 2016 get into that Chinese market open,” Seng said. “It’s been the fastest growing beef market over the last decade.”

Several of China’s neighbors are really loyal U.S. beef customers. Several beef councils like Oklahoma and Texas have earmarked additional funds to promote beef in the region. Seng said the efforts are having a positive impact as there is a barbecue boom going on in Japan and Korea. This is creating more opportunities to sell more beef into those markets and it is creating growth. In having these states involved, he said they have seen the market first hand, their investment and they have been able to talk with beef customers, which creates confidence in the product. He believes having states work in these markets helps brings the relationship closer to American beef producers than marketing of U.S. beef. Seng said personalized efforts become much more effective for both marketing and selling.

Radio Oklahoma Network Farm Director Ron Hays featured Seng on the Beef Buzz feature. Click or tap on the LISTEN BAR below to listen to today's Beef Buzz.

The Beef Buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network- but is also a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for today's show- and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.


Ron Hays Beef Buzzes with USMEF President and CEO Phil Seng
right-click to download mp3


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