UAE allows French beef imports

The UAE’s Ministry of Environment and Water has authorised French beef meat imports into the country after negotiations the French Ministry of Agriculture that led to the signing of the Bovine Meat Certificate in March.

All the imported beef meat products will be halal certified by French organizations authorised by local authorities.

The GEF, a group founded in November 2011 by Interbev to represent the interests of French beef meat, has set itself as a priority to win over the cattle meat market in the UAE.

The UAE officially lifted the BSE-related embargo in late 2009 for France (Decree 2009/133).

With 19.4 million head of cattle, France has Europe’s largest bovine livestock and above all the largest one for the production of beef meat.

“The French beef meat sector will enter the UAE market by meeting with importers, Chefs at major hotels and restaurants, and retailers. Importers and leading Chefs established in the UAE are eager to buy French beef meat, which they see as a hallmark of quality,” said Christelle Labernède, head of Agribusiness at Ubifrance Dubai.

“The UAE are great consumers of meat as a result of the growth of tourism there and of the high income per-capita. The country consumes 18 times more meat per capita than the worldwide average, and depends on imports for 80 per cent of its cattle meat needs. Meat consumption is expected to increase by 28 per cent from 2011 to 2015, when it should reach 439,000 tonnes,” she added.

Xavier Pacholek, agricultural counselor for the Middle East at the Embassy of France welcomed the opening of the UAE market to French beef.

He noted that with 1.6 million tons produced annually, France is Europe’s leading producer of beef and noted that approximately 250,000 tons of French beef are exported each year in Europe and in the rest of the world.

“French beef meat is popular worldwide for its taste (flavor, juiciness) and nutritional qualities and French veterinary services offer a very high level of safety: they are one of the few veterinary services in the world receiving the ISO / IEC 17020 accreditation related to official controls,” he said. –TradeArabia News Service