News briefs 26 August 2011

Beef Central, 26/08/2011

Japan lift bans on cattle shipments

Japan has lifted a ban on beef shipments from all four prefectures where radioactive cesium had earlier been detected after measures were put in place to protect livestock from contamination. RTT news reported yesterday that the Government has given clearance to the prefectures of Iwate, Fukushima and Tochigi. Miyagi was the first to resume shipments after its ban was lifted last week. The government instructed all four prefectures between July and early August to suspend shipment of beef cattle to meat processing plants after radioactive cesium exceeding the official limit was found in beef from the region. All the four prefectures lie adjacent on the north-eastern coast of Japan.


ACCC pursues Vic meat companies

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has instituted legal proceedings in the Federal Court, Melbourne, against two Victorian meat retailers alleging false and misleading representations about meat claimed to originate from King Island, Tasmania. A statement issued by ACCC yesterday said: “The ACCC alleges that Hooker Meats Pty Ltd trading as ‘Peninsula Bulk Meats’, misrepresented in newspaper advertisements and on their website that meat they supplied was grown on King Island. The ACCC also alleges that Kingisland Meatworks & Cellars Pty Ltd and its director, Mr Alexander Mastromanno, misrepresented in newspaper advertisements and on their website that a significant proportion of meat supplied was grown on King Island. The ACCC is seeking declarations that the companies contravened the Trade Practices Act 1974 and the Competition & Consumer Act 2010, and is seeking injunctions; pecuniary penalties; corrective notices; costs and orders that the companies establish and maintain a compliance program. The proceedings have been filed in the Federal Court’s Fast Track List.  Scheduling conferences will be held in Melbourne on 6 October 2011 at 9:30 am.


Korean beef imports rise

Korean beef imports for July totalled 24,665 tonnes, an increase of 14pc on last year and 3pc on June, according to Meat and Livestock Australia. Total Korean imports for the seven months to June 2011 totalled 172,254 tonnes, an 18pc increase year-on-year. Quoting Korea's Trade Association, MLA said July imports from Australia were up by 4pc year-on-year, with frozen beef driving the growth. From January to July 2011, imports of Australian chilled and frozen beef increased 16pc and 9pc, respectively, on the same time last year. Australia supplied almost 80pc and 44pc of total Korean chilled and frozen beef imports. The US, New Zealand and Mexico supplied 37pc, 12pc and 1pc respectively.

NT minister backs Vietnam welfare standards

Northern Territory primary industry minister Kon Vatskalis says the shipment of 1000 NT cattle that will leave Darwin for Vietnam today represents an important first step in a market that could grow significantly over time. Mr Vatskalis said NT Government representatives have visited Vietnam and are satisfied with animal welfare standards in the market. "The NT Government has representatives on the ground in Vietnam already and they will be there during the unloading of the first shipment to provide technical advice on feedlot management and animal husbandry." He said representatives from his Department have viewed the abattoir in Hai Phong, and have reported that the facility and associated infrastructure is of high standard, with Australian style stunning equipment. Mr Vatskalis said Government and industry organisations are working collaboratively to maintain the Territory’s existing markets and develop new livestock trade opportunities overseas.


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