Officials of the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative along with USDA representatives have met with Chinese officials to discuss a USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service risk assessment on Chinese cooked poultry. The issue has implications on other trade products.
NPPC and other meat groups sent a letter to USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack earlier this month to ask him to place a high priority on completing the review on Chinese poultry.
Resolution of this issue and other sanitary and phytosanitary issues, including a ban on the feed additive ractopamine, is crucial to future market access for U.S. pork products, according to the National Pork Producers Council. China is a potentially enormous market, and China has imported record levels of U.S. pork this year.
In September, China imported nearly 87,000 metric tons of U.S. pork products. While China is currently 98 percent self-sufficient in pork production, even a small increase in U.S. exports to that market would greatly benefit producers.
If China decides to import just an additional 1 percent of its total pork annual consumption, it could mean an additional 500,000 metric tons of U.S. pork exports. Valued at $1 billion that export increase could create 13,000 direct pork industry jobs, according to analysis by Dermot Hayes, Iowa State University economist.