What's the Background?
Taiwan since 2007 has blocked market access for U.S. pork exports through a zero-tolerance policy on ractopamine despite an overwhelming body of scientific evidence that demonstrates the safety of the feed additive. Additionally, ractopamine has been determined to be safe by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and is approved for use in pork production in 26 countries, with 75 additional countries allowing the importation of pork from hogs fed ractopamine even though it is not fed in their domestic herds. In July 2012, the U.N.’s Codex Alimentarius, which sets international standards for food safety, approved a maximum residue limit (MRL) for ractopamine, which U.S. pork meets. The U.S. government and NPPC have worked with Taiwanese officials to resolve the problem but to-date the country has not lifted its unscientific ban on U.S. pork from hogs fed ractopamine. In 2012, Taiwan set an MRL for ractopamine in imported beef but not for pork.
Why Does It Matter to our Producers?
Availability of safe and effective animal health products is important to pork producers, who depend on these products to maintain healthy and productive animals. International standards setting bodies, such the Codex Alimentarius, create global standards based on science that ensure consumer health and facilitate trade. The United States and its trading partners should adopt Codex standards, especially for established maximum residue levels (MRLs) for veterinary drugs for use in feed.
What is NPPC's position?
NPPC is supportive of the use of proven and safe technologies for the production of pork. Taiwan should immediately lift its unjustified ractopamine ban on all U.S. pork and pork products or, at the very least, establish an import MRL based on the U.S. or Codex standard. NPPC opposes the inclusion of Taiwan in the Trans-Pacific Partnership until this occurs.