Argentine beef, honey likely to hit Chinese dinner tables soon

Source:Xinhua Published: 2015-4-15 11:13:08

Argentine beef and honey may soon make their way onto Chinese dinner tables, if current quality control and inspection by Chinese representatives give exports the green light.

Amid efforts to promote bilateral strategic partnership, officials from China and Argentina are brought together in Buenos Aires in recent days, with Chinese inspectors dispatched to certify production and export procedures in rural parts of the South American nation.

Chinese Ambassador to Argentina Yang Wanming and Javier Rodriguez, secretary of institutional policy coordination and agricultural emergencies, met recently over the potential export of Argentina's famed beef and other products.

The meeting was "part of the steps our country is taking to enable refrigerated boned beef exports," Rodriguez said in a press release. "We are very pleased with the work we have been doing with China, which is a key country for our agricultural products."

Speaking at a business seminar hosted by the embassy several days ago, Yang said "China's domestic consumption, increasingly more dynamic and diverse, will provide Argentina with commercial opportunities to boost its export of value-added products and services."

Argentina is also seeking to get the certification it needs to export honey to China. To that end, representatives of China's General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ) were in the South American country recently to verify the quality control and certification systems in use by their counterparts at Argentina's National Agrofood Quality and Health Service (Senasa).

The Chinese delegation evaluated Argentina's honey production chain from March 25 to April 1, through site inspections of production and commercial centers, according to Senasa.

Chinese inspectors Yu Wenjun, Zheng Xin, Cao Yanzhong and Li Xuemin, all from the AQSIQ, toured apiaries, honey extraction rooms, and processing and export facilities in different parts of northern Chaco province and western Buenos Aires province.

The inspectors also toured Senasa's Central Laboratory, a Senasa-accredited private lab, a business that sells and distributes veterinary products for the apiary sector, and a port terminal in Buenos Aires.

The visit concluded with a meeting at Senasa headquarters in Buenos Aires, where representatives from both countries pored over the inspection and quality control process the agency uses throughout the honey production chain and whether it meets Chinese standards.

"The visit marked the beginning of the process of evaluating and matching the requisites needed for opening the Chinese market to Argentina's honey exports," said Senasa.

"After the AQSIQ sends Senasa its report on the outcome of the visit and we respond, that will be the time to agree on the zoosanitary requisites that will allow Argentina to export its products to China," the agency added.

In October, the European Union announced it was lifting restrictions on honey imports from Argentina, following a change in the existing regulations. Argentina is the world's third-largest honey exporter, after China and the United States.

Posted in: Food

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