China's lifting of BSE ban on UK beef hailed
A decision by China to lift the BSE ban on UK beef has been welcomed by Northern Ireland's Chief Veterinary Officer.
China yesterday removed its long-standing block on exports of beef from the UK in a landmark move for producers.
The lifting of the ban, first imposed over 20 years ago, follows two successful inspection visits to the UK in 2017 and 2018. During the visits Chinese inspectors spent several days in Northern Ireland inspecting official BSE controls in feed mills, slaughter plants and at the Agri-food and Biosciences Institute laboratory.
Inspectors were briefed by officials from the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs' veterinary service and Food Standards Agency on BSE systems and procedures here and the high standards that earned BSE negligible risk status in 2017.
Chief Veterinary Officer Dr Robert Huey said: "This is wonderful news for the beef industry in Northern Ireland and is a major step to opening up access to the Chinese market.
"This follows a huge amount of work within DAERA and with our industry partners, both primary producers and beef processors.