The US National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) as well as animal health company Elanco have reacted positively to the news that the Codex Alimentarius Commission decided to adopt an acceptable daily intake and maximum residue levels for pork and beef.
“NPPC is pleased that the Codex commission finally approved this scientifically proven safe product,” said NPPC president R.C. Hunt. “The commission, as it should, fulfilled its mandate to base standards and guidelines on science.”
The standard was opposed by the European Union and Russia. The EU, China, Taiwan and Thailand currently ban imports of pork from pigs fed ractopamine.
“US pork producers are very disappointed with the continued opposition to ractopamine for reasons other than scientific ones from several countries, particularly Russia,” Hunt said.
“That country is set to join the World Trade Organization this year, and the WTO requires member countries to abide by international trade standards. Given Russia’s intransigence on ractopamine, we’re concerned about its commitment to WTO principles.”
Jeff Simmons, president, Elanco, said: “These standards provide an international food safety reference point that helps assure consumers that their food is safe. Codex standards for ractopamine are a significant step towards enabling sustainable meat production, fulfilling the increased demand for animal protein and therefore addressing worldwide hunger.”
“Elanco is very pleased with the Codex Commission’s decision of adopting global food safety standards for ractopamine for muscle, fat, liver and kidney.”
In a press release, Elanco emphasised that ractopamine is a feed ingredient that directs nutrients from fat to lean protein, helping increase the yield of lean meat from cattle and swine. “Ractopamine is not an antibiotic, steroid hormone or genetically modified organism – nor is it manufactured using genetically modified organisms.”
Ractopamine is commercially available from Elanco as Paylean, a swine feed ingredient that directs nutrients to improve carcass leanness, increase average daily gain and improve feed efficiency.
• Elanco Animal Health
• Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)
• National Pork Producers Council (NPPC)
• Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
• World Health Organization (WHO)