Mexico removes import restriction on U.S. beef

The Mexican government is in the process of making regulatory changes that allow for import of U.S. beef and beef products derived from cattle of any age. This important development lifts the 30-month cattle age limit for U.S. beef and effectively removes the last of Mexico’s BSE-related restrictions.

“This is an issue that U.S. Meat Export Federation has been working on for a number of years, and resolving it has been a lengthy process,” said Chad Russell, U.S. Meat Export Federation regional director for Mexico, Central America and the Dominican Republic, contractor to the beef checkoff. “We received excellent support on this issue from FAS officials at the U.S. embassy in Mexico, who always made sure that it was front-and-center whenever U.S.-Mexico trade issues were being discussed at high levels. Though it took some time, these efforts have now paid off.”

The changes to Mexico’s import regulations were to take effect April 30, though shipments of over-30-month beef cannot begin until the USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) updates its Export Library. USMEF expects this process to be completed within the next few days. This will also allow the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) export verification (EV) program for Mexico, in which approximately 170 U.S. establishments are currently enrolled, to be terminated.

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