Tom Super –
“This announcement is a positive development and a testament to the administration’s work to break down some of the existing obstacles that have been preventing U.S. chicken from regaining access to the Chinese market,” said National Chicken Council President Mike Brown. “With the announcement of U.S. beef access to China, we encourage the administration to continue their work to remove China’s obstacles preventing U.S. broiler access to their marketplace.
“NCC and our members support free and fair trade,” Brown continued. “In order to be effective, free trade must operate as a two-way street. I am optimistic that as our negotiators continue the dialogue with China, U.S. broiler access issues will be resolved expeditiously.”
U.S. chicken has been blocked by China since January 2015, when the country issued a blanket ban on all U.S. poultry over issues related to avian influenza. Poultry exports to China peaked in 2008, with an export value of $722 million.
Brown also said the announcement only further underscores the need for USDA to scrap its controversial “GIPSA rules” on poultry.
“In an increasingly competitive global marketplace, it makes little sense for unnecessary and burdensome regulations to be imposed on U.S. chicken producers,” Brown said. “We urge Secretary Perdue to rescind the GIPSA regulations on the broiler industry that will bring tremendous costs and put U.S. broiler products at a competitive disadvantage both domestically and abroad.”
FSIS still must take a number of steps, including issuing a proposed rule in the Federal Register along with a comment period, before it can make a final determination as to whether China is equivalent and thus eligible to export poultry to the United States that was slaughtered and cooked in Chinese establishments.