On Thursday the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) released a statement announcing that the United States and South Africa had reached an agreement to eliminate trade barriers for U.S. beef, pork and poultry entering South Africa.
This market has been completely closed to U.S. beef since the 2003 BSE case, while several technical barriers have also prevented U.S. pork from reaching South Africa. Recognizing how difficult it has been for the U.S. meat industry to gain meaningful access to South Africa, the USTR statement includes the following caveat:
“While we celebrate the progress we have made in resolving the outstanding technical issues, the true test of our success will be based on the ability of South African consumers to buy American product in local stores.”
USMEF is gathering more details on the agreement reached by the two countries, and will provide more information as it becomes available.