China joins ban of pork from three countries due to dioxin scare

EUROPE - China has joined Taiwan and South Korea in suspending pork imports from Belgium and the Netherlands as the two countries attempt to minimise the damage to their meat industries due to the presence of dioxin contaminated feed.

China went a step further in banning imports from Germany, which has also been hit by the scare, though to a lesser extent than Belgium and the Netherlands.

The discovery of the carcogenic contaminant in animal feed has led to the quarantine of about 650 farms in the three countries.

While the trading suspension in the Asian countries means an opportunity for suppliers from other countries, it has put a black mark against Europe's efforts to ensure the safety of its meat and regain consumer confidence.

South Korea is the most important non-EU destination for pork produced in Belgium and the Netherlands. The two countries exported a total of 25,000 tonnes of pork worth about €62 million to South Korea in 2005.

In Belgium, where most of the contaminated feed was distributed, regulators have completed testing at 270 of the 400 quarantined pig farms.

Confirmed illegal dioxin levels were found in five pig farms so far. Another 28 farms are still being retested after a rapid method indicated that dioxin levels are above the legal limit, the country's food regulator stated today.

Source: NutraIngredients-USA
calendar icon 10 February 2006
clock icon 1 minute read
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