News story | Date: 20/04/2017 | Ministry of Agriculture and Food
Today, The Norwegian Minister of Agriculture and Food Jon Georg Dale and Chinese Minister Zhi Shuping signed a protocol to regulate quarantines and health requirements for the export of genetic material from the 'Norwegian Red' breed of dairy cattle (NRC) from Norway to China.
The project to export genetic material of cattle to China was initiated in 2008. China has established a goal of increasing production of fresh milk for children. Today's protocol signing means that in the future, Chinese children can drink milk from cows bred from Norwegian Red stock.
The Chinese Minister Zhi Shuping heads the Chinese Ministry of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine of the People's Republic of China (AQSIQ). This ministry is responsible for import, export and certification. It approves export and health certificates, and is responsible for border inspection posts in China.
In 2015, China's agricultural products exports to Norway amounted to approximately 1600 million NOK (186 million USD), while Norway exported agricultural products for 110 million NOK (12 million USD) to China - mainly processed foods, hides and skins, and drinking water.
Norwegian agricultural products maintain a high quality level with regard to food safety, animal health and pesticides. In future negotiations with China, Norway's interests will involve access to the Chinese market for dairy products, genetic material and vegetable oils in addition to the products we already export.
Geno SA at Store Ree in Stange will be a key player in export of cattle/NRC genetic material to China. Geno Global already exports genetic material from 'Norwegian Red' cattle to USA Canada, the UK, Italy, Germany, France, New Zealand and Australia. Geno SA has an annual turnover of NOK 350 million (40 milllion USD - figures from 2015).