On May 29, Japan’s Ministry of Health, Labour, and Welfare (MHLW) confirmed that the U.S. Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) system for meat and poultry is sufficient to meet new import requirements scheduled to come into effect on June 1, 2021 under Japan’s revised Food Sanitation Act. U.S. exporters of these products to Japan do not need to take any additional action.

USDA’s Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS) and Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) provided the necessary information to MHLW on the U.S. HACCP system via questionnaire responses as well as an in-person audit of U.S. establishments in February 2020. Upon completing its review, MHLW announced on May 29, 2020 that it recognized the U.S. HACCP system for meat and poultry as fulfilling the requirements of the revised Food Sanitation Act. As a result, U.S. meat and poultry exports may continue to Japan uninterrupted. No additional information or documentation is required. This applies to all products eligible for export to Japan including beef, pork, poultry, sheep, and goat meat (including eligible offal products).

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Saudi Arabia is a significant market for U.S. food and agricultural products, with direct U.S. exports estimated at $1.39 billion in 2019. There are opportunities for a wide range of U.S. products, but there are also significant impediments to trade. These include several halal related requirements and restrictions on meat and poultry products. This reports highlights the potential of the market as well as issues that U.S. exporters should be aware of.

Saudi Arabia depends on imports to meet about 70 percent of its food security needs and it will remain a major importer of food and agricultural products. As such, the outlook for sustainable U.S. food product exports to the Kingdom is good. U.S. food products are generally viewed as meeting higher quality standards compared to food produced locally or imports from other countries. U.S. food products command higher prices and higher margins compared to imports from Asia and Arab countries, and demand for U.S. food products in the Saudi market has been increasing.

The full GAIN report can be viewed here.