CFIA Briefing on BSE Case; More Suspensions for Imports of Canadian Beef

Shortly after last week’s Export Newsline was distributed, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) held a technical briefing on its investigation of the classical BSE case recently confirmed in Alberta. CFIA announced that the cow in the 2015 case (born in 2009) was born on the same farm that was involved in a 2010 BSE case detected in an animal born in 2004. The full transcript of CFIA’s technical briefing is available online.

CFIA also announced that China has imposed temporary restrictions on Canadian beef and beef products, but no further details on this suspension were revealed. China was Canada’s fifth-largest export market in 2014, taking 6,831 metric tons (mt) valued at $36.4 million.

News reports indicate Russia will also restrict imports of Canadian beef and cattle in response to the BSE case. This information has not yet been confirmed by CFIA, which is posting market access updates and providing other information related to the case on this webpage.

If confirmed, Russia’s action will have no immediate impact on meat trade. Canada’s beef exports to Russia were halted in early 2013 due to ractopamine-related restrictions. Canadian beef was also included in the import embargo imposed by Russia on Aug. 7, 2014.

Canada reported live cattle exports to Russia of just 216 head in 2014, down 76 percent from the previous year. Canada’s cattle exports to Russia peaked in 2011 at 7,421 head.

Other trading partners that have imposed new restrictions on imports of Canadian beef since the BSE case was announced are South Korea, Taiwan, Peru and Belarus.

Export data source: Global Trade Atlas