To address the needs and concerns of key Taiwanese pork processors, USMEF hosted an educational seminar at TungHai University that focused on further processing trends and highlighted the advantages of U.S. pork raw materials. More than 100 processors, distributors, restaurant owners and other industry partners gathered on the university’s campus in Taichung City for the program, which was funded by the USDA Market Access Program (MAP) and the Pork Checkoff.
USMEF Taiwan Director Davis Wu said the seminar came at an important time because Taiwan’s importers continue to take a conservative approach with U.S. pork, even as demand for pork raw materials in the country’s processing sector grows.
“Because ractopamine is a confusing issue for pork processors in Taiwan, they want more information that they can convey to customers and regain loyalty and confidence in U.S. pork,” said Wu. “So during this seminar, the immediate target were importers, who can take information and pass it along to their clientele.”
Technical concepts featured during the seminar focused on optimizing the value and quality of further processed products. Travis Arp, USMEF technical services manager, presented an overview of current trends in the U.S. and discussed the advantages of U.S. pork as a raw material.
“The audience wanted to gain better knowledge of why using U.S. raw materials would improve their finished product and add value to what they currently produce,” explained Arp, who also touched upon the seminar’s ultimate goal. “Although the ractopamine-related trade barrier cannot be resolved in the near term, providing end users educational information on U.S. pork quality is very important and is a priority for USMEF.”
Following a series of presentations by local further processing experts, USMEF held a tasting session, introducing branded U.S. pork sausages and a variety of other unique pork products in cooperation with TungHai University and T-Ham, one of Taiwan’s largest pork processors. USMEF prepared processed pork products using U.S. pork picnics and hams, drawing very favorable responses from seminar attendees.
“U.S. pork is well-liked in the Taiwanese market, despite the negative voices,” said Wu. “The seminar was an important venue for promoting and marketing U.S. pork, creating more opportunities for our partners and rebuilding a positive business environment.”
Following the seminar, an article in the Economic Daily News, one of Taiwan’s mainstream newspapers, reported positively on the U.S. pork industry. The article highlighted several positive attributes of the U.S. pork production system, including the Pork Quality Assurance Plus program, disease prevention efforts and reliable feedgrain supplies.
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