Feds leading push to open up foreign beef, poultry markets

US - Federal officials are continuing efforts to open up foreign markets to United States-produced beef and poultry, said Sixth District Republican Congressman Bob Goodlatte, the chair of the House Agriculture Committee.

The focus in recent weeks has been on the beef industry in the wake of reports that a single cow in a Texas herd had tested positive for mad-cow disease last month.

The case attracted international attention - and raised questions among trading partners about U.S. inspection methods, most notably in Japan, where a food-safety commission panel reported that nine of the 20 cows found to have mad-cow disease in Japan would have been sent to market under U.S. testing procedures.

The issues facing poultry producers have more to do with the European market. European trading partners have kept U.S. poultry products out of their markets because producers here use a liquid, chilled-based method of killing bacteria, which many on the Continent feel is inferior to the air-based method of cooling the poultry before it is processed that is used there.

"Our method, I think, and many people across the United States think, is very safe, in fact, safer than the way they do it in Europe," Goodlatte said.

"But because protectionism is rampant in many parts of the world, other countries, I believe, use their method of doing things as a way to keep our product from coming in even though our method is a good alternative or is in fact a superior alternative.

Source: augustafreepress.com
calendar icon 18 July 2005
clock icon 1 minute read
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