Korean Govt to Introduce Pork Tracking System

SOUTH KOREA - Korea aims to introduce a tracking system for all pork sold on the local market starting in 2014 to make it easier to recall substandard products, the government said yesterday.
calendar icon 27 June 2011
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The Ministry for Food, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries said it is in the process of working out the details of setting up the comprehensive tracking system with related agencies and livestock groups.

"Because pigs are usually slaughtered in a relatively short period of time compared to cattle, the tracking system may be harder to maintain, but there is consensus that it must be created to improve consumer rights and strengthen the competitiveness of local pork producers vis-a-vis imports," a ministry official said.

According to Korea Joongang Daily, he said once the system is in place, consumers will be able to check quickly where a pig was raised, slaughtered and how its meat was packaged and distributed before reaching store shelves.

The ministry said that the tracking system has gained more urgency following the latest outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease that forced the government to cull and bury more than 3.47 million livestock, of which the bulk were pigs.

A working tracking system might have allowed authorities to better control the spread of the disease that is estimated to have cost Seoul more than 3 trillion won ($2.8 billion), experts said.

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