AUSTIN (September 26, 2016) – Sunday, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack confirmed that China’s Ministry of Agriculture will lift a ban on imports of U.S. beef from animals under 30 months of age. It’s been more than 12 years since China imposed the ban on U.S. beef imports. In 2003, China imported around $10 million of beef annually from the U.S. Since then, meat consumption in China has grown every year, and the beef import market is now considered to be worth nearly $150 million monthly, a significant jump in the past 13 years.
The Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) launched a global initiative under Commissioner Sid Miller to bring more Texas products to international markets and secure international trade opportunities for Texas producers. Commissioner Miller said Texas is uniquely situated to benefit from the ban being lifted.
“The Texas Department of Agriculture is ready to work diligently with our Chinese counterparts to increase beef exports from Texas producers and take advantage of this ban being lifted,” Commissioner Miller said. “We have been working hard to establish relationships with our trading partners in China. Texas beef is the best around, and I look forward to seeing more Texas beef make its way to China.”
As Commissioner-elect, Commissioner Miller hosted a delegation of Chinese officials in Austin to grow agriculture trade opportunities between Texas and the Gansu province of China. Once in office, Commissioner Miller took an extended 11-day trip to China to visit Beijing, Shanghai, Hangzhou and Lanzhou to further build relationships and tap into this expanding market.
China is Texas’ fourth-largest trading partner. In 2014, agricultural and livestock exports from Texas to China were valued at $4.8 billion.