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Smith Welcomes the Reopening of the Philippines Market for Irish Beef

The Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Brendan Smith TD, today announced that the Philippines had removed the ban on the importation of Irish EU beef. This was put in place in November 2000 following the BSE crisis in Europe at the time. Prior to the ban the market was developing well and over 12,000 tonnes of Irish beef had been exported to the Philippines in 1999.

The Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food has been working consistently since then with the help of An Bord Bia and the Department of Foreign Affairs to have the market reopened. In September 2007 a delegation from Ireland representing these bodies travelled to the Philippines and presented a seminar on the safety of Irish beef which was very well received. Following on from that in May this year, Ireland succeeded in gaining Controlled Risk status, regarding BSE, from the OIE (the World Animal Health Organisation). This reflects the success of the comprehensive measures implemented in Ireland to control BSE and confirms the safety of Irish beef in that regard.

The Minister said this represented another breakthrough in regaining markets closed because of BSE and added that it would provide a welcome additional outlet for Irish beef on the world market.

Date Released: 05 August 2008