The Canadian Meat Council has issued a challenge to politicians campaigning for federal election this fall to outline what they would do about China’s suspension of imports of Canadian pork and beef.
The Council says that the suspension seems to be more political than simply the Chinese discovery of “non-Canadian pork” covered by a Canadian Food Inspection Agency export certificate.
There have been hints from Canadian officials before that the pork may not have been Canadian; this is the first time it has been definitely declared “non-Canadian”.
The Chinese authorities said a shipment of pork from a Quebec company contained residues of ractopamine growth promotant which they ban from pork imports.
Later officials said they found more than 100 fraudulent CFIA export certificates, but it’s never been clear whether that discovery was made by Canadian or Chinese officials or both working together.
The Canadian Meat Council wants Canadian officials to do more to settle the issue with the Chinese government, claiming Canadians are the victims of fraud, not the culprits.
It says China has blocked more than $100 million worth of Canadian beef and pork since the suspension began June. 25.
The Council issued a statement in which it said ‘We call on all parties ahead of the upcoming election to articulate how they see this file being resolved.
‘The longer Canadian producers and exporters remain pawns in a political stand-off - the more the threat of job losses will be felt. The red meat sector represents 266,000 jobs from farm to fork.’