MSG imports investigated in Vietnam

By Keith Nuthall

- Last updated on GMT

Vietnam claims data shows sharply falling domestic MSG production, while imports are growing
Vietnam claims data shows sharply falling domestic MSG production, while imports are growing

Related tags World trade organization

The Vietnamese government has launched an investigation into booming imports of meat flavour enhancer monosodium glutamate (MSG), which may lead to temporary protective duties being imposed.

It follows complaints from MSG manufacturer Vedan Vietnam Joint Stock Limited Company that imports have hit the company’s sales and are damaging its financial health. 

According to a Vietnamese government note to the World Trade Organization (WTO), there has been “an increase of volume of import of the subject good that causes or threatens to cause a serious injury to the domestic industry producing similar products”​. 

Vietnam added that data currently “showed a situation of sharply declining domestic production and market share, productivity, and profits or losses, in conjunction with the increase in imports”​. 

WTO rules

Under WTO rules, if such problems can be proved in an inquiry, an importing country can impose temporary ‘safeguard duties’ to give local industries time to adjust by making new investments or devising new products or marketing approaches. 

Vietnam’s safeguard investigation was launched on 1 September and interested parties such as importers and exporters have 30 days to make comments on Vietnam’s plans to the Vietnam Competition Authority (email avaugg@zbvg.tbi.ia​). 

A UN Food & Agriculture Organisation (FAO) report on meat processing aids has noted that MSG “is particularly popular in Asia where it is widely used in most meat dishes but also in many processed meat products (0.5% or higher)”​.

Related topics Meat

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