New Zealand chilled meat exports successful

New Zealand chilled meat exports successful

More New Zealand chilled beef and sheepmeat will be shipped to China after initial trials appear to have met with Chinese approval. Deputy secretary-general of the China Meat Association, Gao Guan, said the trials had been promising. China suffered a shortfall in beef and sheepmeat supplies and consumption of its main meat protein, pork, has fallen in recent years. The first shipments left mid-last year, headed by Alliance Group and Greenlea Meats. They were followed by a number of others including Silver Fern Farms.

One year ago the Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy and Trade Minister Todd McClay welcomed a Memorandum of Cooperation, signed during Chinese premier Li Keqiang’s visit to New Zealand last year, that allows for the export of chilled meat into China, calling it the big win for exporters. 

"It would be good if New Zealand could persist in this trade. Chinese production happens in one area and consumption happens across China but our technology is not well developed. We have few enterprises which have the capacity to do chilled meat," Gao Guan from China Meat Association said. Beijing and Shanghai consumers were far from the northern areas where the meat was produced. At present, most animals are slaughtered and immediately eaten because of the lack of a cool chain supply.

The trial year for chilled sheepmeat, beef and goat meat marks positive progress for New Zealand’s work programme to expand market access to China for a range of New Zealand’s meat products. Now there is a commitment to seek to expand the trades after the trial period finished successful.