Irish pork’s loss is no one’s gain: USMEF


By Tom Johnston on 12/8/2008


Source of Article:


A crisis of confidence among importers of Irish pork following the discovery of dioxin in shipments to some 25 countries threatens more than the stability of Ireland's pork industry.

Dublin on Saturday ordered the recall of all pork products made in the Republic of Ireland after excessive amounts of dioxins were discovered in fat samples from pigs believed to have eaten feed contaminated with industrial oil from a feed-making machine. The Food Safety of Authority traced the problem to a feed maker in southeast Ireland that supplied the tainted feed to 10 pig farms in Ireland and nine others in Northern Ireland, according to the Associated Press.

According to reports, the recall could cost Irish pork producers $128 million, more than one-sixth the industry's annual worth.

John Brook, regional director of the U.S. Meat Export Federation's European branch, told Ireland's production is small relative to other major pork-exporting countries, so the amount of recalled product is insignificant in global terms.

However, the big impact of its problem will be damage to the reputation of pork all over the world, he said.

"The problem is fully identified, which means that the supply chain (in Ireland) will be back in full performance within one week, so there isn't even the time to fill a gap if there was a gap," Brook said. "There probably isn't a gap, because the damage to the reputation of the product is probably going to have a longer negative impact on pork consumption – and not just Irish pork. The overall impact of the incident is likely to be far more negative on consumption than on supply."


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