Magazine article Business Asia

Stakes High in China Meat Sector

Magazine article Business Asia

Stakes High in China Meat Sector

Article excerpt

Live cattle exports to Asia have hit dire straits, but some positive news is emerging in the giant Chinese market.

With the live cattle export market to Asia in a parlous state, it is little wonder that the local industry is keen to develop China as a new customer.

Australia has tried previously to facilitate trade in the very much closed, but potentially lucrative, China market.

A recent series of breakthroughs may see a long-term plan to export live cattle to Foshan in southern China come true.

If it eventuates, cattle will be shipped to China, where they will be fattened, killed, packaged and sold as Australian beef killed in China.

A protocol has been signed between the Meat and Livestock Association (formerly the Australian Meat and Livestock Corporation) and Chinese officials covering breeding and health concerns, giving the export plan one of its best chances.

The Queensland Beef Institute is believed to be considering offering considerable financial assistance towards the project, giving it more promise than any previous attempt to export beef to China.

Most of the momentum has come from China, with one man, Mr Sung Hei, the chairman of Foshan Deluxe Meat Processing Ltd, the driving force behind the project.

Based in Foshan, west of Guangzhou, Mr Sung is planning to build a 10,000-head feedlot and accompanying abattoir to fatten and kill Australian-bred cattle from the Northern Territory and Queensland.

His aim is to one day supply all the McDonald's restaurants in southern China and replace the low-quality beef imported from South America, Argentina and Iraq. …

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