Initially, the inspection centre will be used mainly by Shuanghui and is expected to be completed within four months: "This is certainly good news for us," said Dou Kai, general manager of a subsidiary, the Shuanghui Import and Export Trade Company. He told GlobalMeatNews: "In the future, other meat companies could also use the checkpoint, as long as they gain approval from Henan authorities."
The checkpoint will increase the efficiency of checking and quarantining imported meat products in the province, helping to decrease company costs, according to a 29 October communiqué from AQSIQ’s Henan branch.
Once it is opened, the checkpoint will allow Shuanghui to check the quality of its imported products instead of going through a coastal port-based checkpoint, such as the Shanghai checkpoint, one of the biggest and busiest in China.
The Luohe checkpoint is expected to cover about 10 acres (57.2 mu – a Chinese land unit), with a cold storage capacity of 10,000 tonnes (t) of meat. The annual projected amount of meat imports to be handled at the checkpoint is estimated to be around 400,000t.
Dou said Shuanghui was creating a budget plan for construction of the checkpoint, which will be managed by Henan authorities, with Shaunghui helping plan its financing.
He forecast that China’s demand for meat would continue to grow in the long run and imported pork was currently more price-competitive than domestically-produced pork.
The new checkpoint plans come as China has decided to "speed up signing meat supervision and quarantine agreements with related nations to import reasonable amounts of beef, lamb and other meat products", according to a 6 November communiqué from China’s State Council, its cabinet.