The National Pork Producers Council is cautiously hopeful that the New Zealand government will open access to U.S. pork after the country’s concerns of porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS), according to an article from Pork Magazine.
PRRS is a disease that affects a pig’s ability to reproduce, as well as can cause respiratory problems in young pigs. The disease was first reported in North America and Central Europe in the 1980s.
The PRRS disease costs U.S. pork producers approximately $646 million per year, as well as lost export opportunities. However, New Zealand imports could increase if the New Zealand Ministry for Primary Industries’ (MPI) Import Health Standard (HIS) allows “customer ready cuts” of pork to enter the country from markets where PRRS has been found, which includes the United States.
New Zealand’s High Court ruled in favor of allowing New Zealand imports of pork from these countries, but the New Zealand pork industry is likely to appeal.