USMEF Audio: Heightened COVID-19-Related Measures Slow Product Movement into China
Despite guidance from international health organizations stating that imported food shipments are an unlikely source of COVID-19 transmission, the Chinese government implemented sample testing procedures last summer at ports of entry. More recently, China has not only expanded COVID-19 testing to include all imported meat and seafood shipments but also added disinfection and tracing requirements for these products, according to the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF).
Joel Haggard, USMEF senior vice president for the Asia Pacific, says in the audio clip above that in recent weeks these new requirements have, to some degree, slowed movement of imported pork and beef products into China's commercial channels. News coverage of positive tests has also caused some consumer pushback on imported meat products. Haggard notes in the audio, however, that China is entering its peak meat buying season leading up to the Lunar New Year, and he expects these obstacles to have less impact moving forward as China's vaccination programs help curb new COVID-19 outbreaks.