Barley bans lifted

Barley bans lifted


Grain
The presence of snails in grain exports has caused trade tensions between Australia and China.

The presence of snails in grain exports has caused trade tensions between Australia and China.

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A ban on two exporters sending barley to China has been lifted.

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A CHINESE ban on barley exports from two Australian grain suppliers has been lifted.

Bans were imposed on Louis Dreyfus and the company then known as Agrex Australia, now part of Queensland-based Riverina, a Mitsubishi Corporation-owned business, due to the alleged presence of snails in export consignments.

Grains Industry Market Access Forum (GIMAF) executive director Tony Russell said snails were an ongoing topic of discussion between Australian and Chinese trade officials.

Snails can be a major problem for farmers, especially in parts of South Australia with limestone-based soils, and can be difficult to grade out of harvested grain, however improved harvest hygiene protocols can keep numbers down.

Mr Russell said the Chinese Government had lifted what was described as a compliance-based ban on the two exporters.

China can be a major importer of Australian feed barley, depending on the season and the largest buyer of Aussie barley last year.

Robert Green, Louis Dreyfus Australia managing director, confirmed the company had received notification it was allowed to export to China once again.

“The necessary paperwork has all been completed,” he said.

A spokesperson for Riverina, which merged with Agrex Australia earlier this year, was unavailable.

While the ban has been lifted, the issue of phytosanitary requirements is likely to remain an issue in trade between the two nations, particularly in relation to pests such as snails.

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