Korea, market opens for beef and veal from the Netherlands

The Netherlands has finally opened the Korean beef market as of 26 July 2019 by registering 9 beef/veal establishments to Korean authorities. Both beef and veal are open at once. Together with Denmark, the Netherlands is the first two European countries which opened the market in Korea.

The Netherlands has put a lot of efforts to open the beef and veal market in Korea for last 13 years. The 1st official letter for market access of Dutch beef/veal was sent to MAFRA (Korean ministry of agriculture) in 2006. Korea experienced a turmoil on US beef import and BSE (mad cow disease) in 2008. Since then, beef import has been a sensitive issue in the Korean society, and the Netherlands has had difficulty in progressing the market access.  

MAFRA finally decided to start procedure for risk assessment of European beef in 2013. Over the last 6 years, both countries have followed tough procedures: questionnaires, system inspection, negotiation for import requirements, ratification by National Assembly, negotiation for model certificates and field inspection for establishments.

The beef/veal allowed to Korea includes all edible parts including bones, which are produced out of cattle less than 30 months of age at the time of slaughter. However, it excludes 1) brains, eyes, spinal cord, skull (excluding the mandible) and vertebral column (excluding vertebrae of the tail, transverse processes of the thoracic and lumbar vertebrae and wings of the sacrum) of cattle less than 30 months of age at the time of slaughter, 2) all mechanically recovered meat (MRM)/mechanically separated meat (MSM), 3) advanced meat recovery products (AMR), 4) intestines from duodenum to rectum, 5) tonsils and 6) ground meat and processed beef products.

Korea is the 4th largest importer of beef in the world, accounting for 5.6% of total imports, and is one of the most expensive 5 countries in local beef prices. Korea imported USD 2.7 billion (415,378 ton) of beef in 2018. The US and Australia accounted for 50.7% and 42.4% of total imports respectively.

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Email: seo-lnv@minbuza.nl