Congressional leaders urge Taiwan to restore U.S. beef trade

by Editor fleischwirtschaft.com
Monday, February 21, 2011

C. A bipartisan group of Congressional leaders called on Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou in a letter to end his country’s unscientific restriction on U.S. beef exports.

In January, Taiwan began refusing U.S. beef shipments that contained trace amounts of ractopamine, a widely used feed ingredient that helps produce lean meat. Ractopamine is approved for safe use in animal feed in 26 countries, including the United States.

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.), Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-Mich.) and House Ways and Means Committee Ranking Member Sander Levin (D-Mich.) reaffirmed in the letter that scientific evidence clearly demonstrates the safety of U.S. beef and that “there is no food-safety justification for these actions.”

Taiwan’s Department of Health in 2007 notified the World Trade Organization that it intended to establish a maximum residue level (MRL) for ractopamine in cattle and swine. The trace amounts of ractopamine found last month on U.S. beef shipments were well below the MRL recommended by the Codex scientific committee and Taiwan’s own government agencies, and posed no threat to human health.

To view the letter in its entirety, visit the Senate Finance Committee’s website here.
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