Australian Embassy

Media Release - 22/08/2014

Visit to Vietnam by Australian livestock exporters


Australia’s Ambassador HE Mr Hugh Borrowman welcomed a delegation of Australian livestock exporters to Vietnam this week. The exporters were in Hanoi for a high level workshop with Vietnamese importers of Australian cattle imported for processing for the consumer market.

This is the second meeting of the major players on both sides as they work together to build the sustainability of this growing trade.

"Traditionally, Australian beef has been associated with the high-end food service sector in Vietnam and we expect that to continue" the Ambassador said. "However, the pioneers in this industry have opened new market channels, putting quality beef into Vietnam at a different price point for consumers."

The Ambassador congratulated the Vietnamese importers on their ongoing efforts to develop their supply chains to handle and process Australian cattle." Vietnamese operators have invested in feedlot and abattoir facilities to bring them up to international standards for not just the humane treatment of the cattle but also the occupational health and safety of workers in the industry. It is very pleasing that they have been supported extensively by Australian industry in these efforts.”

"This is a great outcome for both countries", the Ambassador said while addressing the group. "It\'s economic diplomacy at work - Australia has a substantial new market and Vietnam has increased its capacity to provide Vietnamese consumers with access to more quality beef at competitive price points."

The Ambassador also took the opportunity to set the record straight on recent reporting in the Vietnamese media on the drug ractopamine. “Ractopamine is not approved for use in cattle in Australia”, he said. “In addition, the Australian Department of Agriculture manages a random test regime and no detections have been reported. The results are publicly available on the Department’s website”. The Ambassador went on to say that Vietnam can be confident that cattle in Australia are not treated with ractopamine.

The live cattle trade between Australia and Vietnam has grown significantly in the last 12 months with Vietnam now Australia’s 2nd largest market behind Indonesia. In the last year, 130,000 Australian cattle were imported to Vietnam to meet market demands.