Northwest cattle producers are cheering new trade standards that will once again allow beef exports to China.
The Chinese market has been closed to U.S. beef since 2003, after mad cow disease showed up in the states.
Jerome Rosa with the Oregon Cattlemen’s Association said the ranchers in Oregon and Washington have an advantage in selling to China.
“In Oregon, we can get beef for less cost into some of these Pacific Rim countries than it costs us to get it to the other side of the Rocky Mountains,” Rosa said. “It really is an opportunity to hit this growing market and yet be cost-competitive because of our strategic location.”
As China’s middle class grows, more people are choosing to eat beef.
“Our office has been getting inundated from calls from people in China wanting our product,” said Rosa.
According to the USDA, before the 2003 ban, the U.S. was the largest provider of beef to China.