Irish beef to carry government approval label in US stores
Irish beef on sale in stores in the USA will now be labelled with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) seal of approval.
The USDA shield is to validate Bord Bia claims that the beef comes from cattle fed a diet of more than 80% grass, that are fully traceable, from quality assured farms and processing plants, treated responsibly with antibiotics and not treated with growth hormones.
Market access for primal cuts of Irish beef to the US was first approved in January 2015 and approval for exporting manufacturing beef was received in July 2016. However, sales of Irish beef in the US have been disappointing so far.
“Earning the trust of the USDA after such a rigorous process will also enhance Ireland’s reputation in other markets and Bord Bia will maximise all opportunities this enhanced creditability may present,” said Bord Bia CEO Tara McCarthy.
Any company wishing to carry the USDA seal of approval in retail outlets must receive go-ahead from Bord Bia. The company must first be a member of the Origin Green programme. Currently, one of the country’s big three beef processors has received approval, with others expected to join in the coming weeks.