EU agricultural export to China and GIs protection

In this short and sweet Q&A the EU Commission announces that the budget for promotion measures aimed at the Chinese market will be more than doubled by 2019. Moreover, something seems to be in the pipeline for a GIs protection bilateral agreement.

Question for written answer to the Commission – Matt Carthy (GUE/NGL) – 26th June 2015

What actions has the Commission taken to increase the penetration of European dairy, pigmeat, lamb and other agricultural exports on the Chinese market in a fair and sustainable manner?

Answer given by Mr Hogan on behalf of the Commission – 31st August 2015

Different actions and measures are put in place to stimulate trade in agricultural products. The Commission services are paying particular attention to trade in agricultural products from the EU to China. DG SANTE and DG AGRI officials are in permanent contact with the Chinese authorities to clarify the current standards and different requirements and to decide on next steps necessary to ensure a fair and sustainable trade between the two sides.

The Commission is also supporting the diversification of export markets for EU agricultural exports via a significantly increased budget for promotion measures — from EUR 60 million to EUR 200 million a year by 2019.

In addition, the EU is currently negotiating with China a bilateral agreement on the protection of geographical indications (GIs), aiming at a protection in China of a list of EU GIs. One hundred names for agricultural products, including dairy and meat products are currently on that list. A positive conclusion of these negotiations would further support the EU’s efforts to maximise trade in agricultural products between the EU and China.

(Source: European Parliament)

Food recalls in EU – Week 34

This week on the RASFF database (Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed) we have four recalls from consumers in EU in the alert notifications:

– Pathogenic micro-organisms: foodborne outbreak (20 cases, 12 people dead) caused by Listeria Monocytogenes in lamb-roll sausages, following food poisoning. Origin Denmark, notified by Denmark, distributed also to Germany, Norway and Sweden;

– Pathogenic micro-organisms: shigatoxin-producing Escherichia Coli in raw milk cheese, following company’s own check. Origin France, notified by France, distributed also to Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Lithuania, Reunion, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Arab Emirates and United Kingdom;

– Pathogenic micro-organisms: Salmonella enteritidis in whole eggs and whole eggs sleeved pasteurized, following an official control on the market. Origin Denmark, notified by Denmark, distributed also to Czech Republic and Greenland;

– Pathogenic micro-organisms: Salmonella enteritidis phagetype D6 in tagliatelle, following an official control on the market. Origin Poland, notified by Germany, distributed also to Belgium and Ireland.

Between the alert notifications, followed by a withdrawal from the market of the product, we find:

– Pathogenic micro-organisms: Clostridium botulinum in frozen scallops, following food poisoning. Origin United Kingdom (via Canada), notified by Norway;

– Pathogenic micro-organisms: Listeria Monocytogenes in semi-preserved anchovies, following company’s own check. Origin Italy, notified by France;

– Pathogenic micro-organisms: foodborne outbreak suspected to be caused by chilled mussels, following food poisoning. Origin Spain, notified by France;

Non pathogenic micro-organisms: contamination with algae of live mussels, following an official control on the market. Origin Netherlands, notified by Netherlands, distributed also to Belgium and France.

Amongst border rejections we have:

– aflatoxins in crushed chilli and shelled groundnuts from India, in peanuts and groundnuts from China ;

– Salmonella in frozen salted chicken from Thailand and in fresh oregano from Turkey;

– unauthorised use of colour E 124 – Ponceau 4R / cochineal red A in preserved vegetables from Japan;

– blanched hazelnut kernels from Turkey and whole nutmegs from India infested with moulds;

– shigatoxin-producing Escherichia coli in chilled lamb and frozen lamb meat from New Zealand;

– poor hygienic state (dirty and soaked cartons) of frozen shrimps from India;

– prohibited substance nitrofuran (metabolite) furazolidone (AOZ) in frozen king prawns and raw prawns from India;

– anthraquinone and unauthorised substance tolfenpyrad in black tea from China;

carbendazim and dimethoate in green beans from Kenya;

formetanate in fresh peppers from Turkey;

carbaryl in fresh peppers from Thailand;

–  chlorfenapyr in broccoli from China.

For feed, we don’t have any relevant notification this week.

For food contact materials we have border rejections for migration of bis(2-ethylhexyl) terephthalate (DOTP) from glass jar containing garlic and coriander paste from Thailand.

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