11.7.3 China

This page is part of the Guidance Document Repository (GDR).

Looking for related documents?
Search for related documents in the Guidance Document Repository General information

Protocols of understanding for conditions applicable to beef and pork have been established between Canada and China.

Exporters should be aware that, as part of their import inspection procedures, the Chinese authorities could test shipments for the presence of pathogens, parasites, heavy metals, pesticide and veterinary drug residue and other toxic and harmful substances. According to the Chinese law, shipments that are found positive will either be returned to the country of origin or destroyed. Import privileges of affected establishments will be suspended.

The operators of Canadian establishments producing edible pork meat by-products for export to China must implement microbiological testing program for edible pork meat by-products.

China has specific labelling and packaging requirements. The operator/exporter bear full responsibility to ensure that applicable labelling and packaging requirements are met (including accurate translation). Available details are provided in Annex B for information only. All concerned should also be aware that information in Annex B can be modified without prior notice.

Registration of exporters/agents: The exporters or agents should be registered with the General Administration. Annex E shows the registration details required and the format to be used by interested parties when they register. The operators of establishments eligible to export to China should send the required information directly to Chinese authorities by E-mail to: h_cert@ciq.org.cn and copy to h_cert@yahoo.com.cn and confirm with their importers that all applicable requirements have been fulfilled to the satisfaction of the Chinese authorities.

The consignee is required to obtain the license from the General Administration for entry of meat products before concluding a trade contract. Food recall measures have been put in place by Chinese authorities since 2010. Import prohibitions or restrictions Import prohibitions

Poultry meat – Avian Influenza: The importation of poultry meat is prohibited. Import restrictions

a) Specific requirements:

  • Water potability: records must show absence of fecal coliform Escherichia coli) and a maximum total plate count of 100 microorganisms per ml or less.
  • The level of nitrite in cured meat products must not exceed 30 ppm (measured in the finished product).

b) Segregation and traceability

  • The operators of establishments where eligible and non-eligible products are produced must perform a complete clean-up before producing meat and meat products eligible for China.
  • Products destined to export must be adequately segregated from non eligible products during production and remain identifiable until export takes place. Independent cutting plants must source their meat for further processing for export to China from slaughter establishments approved /registered by China. Both incoming meat and product destined for China must be segregated from product not eligible to export to China. All meat products for export to China must be segregated by either physical separation (space) or by time to ensure complete segregation between eligible and ineligible products for export to China.
  • Products transferred from one registered establishment to another must be accompanied by a transfer certificate confirming that it meets the applicable requirements (see Annex J – Introduction of Chapter 11). All meat products for export to China must be produced and stored only in establishments that are eligible for export to China. The list of eligible establishments can be found on Annex 1.
  • Cold storage facilities must dedicate and identify a specific area for products destined to China.

c) Pork: Pork and pork products destined to China must be derived from animals raised under ractopamine-free program recognized by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency. Please refer to section 11.6.1 and Annex T of Introduction of Chapter 11 of the Meat Hygiene Manual of Procedures (MHMOP).

  • Canada officially confirms that it is free from African Swine Fever, Classical Swine Fever, Foot-and-Mouth Disease, Swine Vesicular Disease, Teschen Disease and Rinderpest.
  • The pigs from which the pork was derived shall meet the following conditions:
    1. were born and raised in Canada;
    2. did not originate from a farm involved in disease eradication program; and,
    3. did not originate from a farm that was affected with Brucella suis within the past six (6) months.
  • The official veterinarian of the CFIA shall carry out the following functions:
    1. supervise the quarantine and carry out ante-mortem and post-mortem inspections according to Canadian veterinary and public health laws and regulations;
    2. certify that the slaughtered swine are healthy and that the meat and viscera are free from any signs of diseases, and have no lesions relevant to human and animal health; and,
    3. certify that the meat is wholesome and fit for human food.
  • Animals slaughtered for export to China may not be slaughtered at the same time as animals not meeting the Chinese requirements. Pork destined to China may not be processed at the same time as pork not meeting the Chinese requirements. Pork not meeting the Chinese requirements must be stored in a separated area of the cold storage.

d) Beef

i) Deboned Beef

Only frozen deboned beef meat derived from Under Thirty Month (UTM) cattle is allowed for export to China. Beef offal and edible tallow are not allowed for export.

"Deboned beef exports to China" refers to deboned skeletal muscle and its products. Deboned skeletal muscle excludes cheek muscle, head muscle, diaphragm muscle, ground meat and mechanically separated meat (MSM); "products" refers to beef products made from deboned skeletal muscle which meet the Inspection and Quarantine Requirements.

The following tissues are ineligible for export: tonsils, distal ileum, brain, eyes, spinal cord, skull, vertebral column and dorsal root ganglia, which were removed in a hygienic manner in accordance with CFIA regulations to avoid contamination of products intended for export to China.

The cattle from which the de-boned beef is derived for export to China must meet the following requirements:

  1. The cattle are born and fed in Canada.
  2. The cattle do not originate from farms under quarantine or transportation restrictions, in accordance with the Canadian Health of Animals Regulations.
  3. The cattle are not members of the known birth or feed cohort of a BSE case
  4. Each animal has a unique identity, the farm of origin (place of birth) can be traced, and the cattle should be slaughtered less than 30 months of age.
  5. Cattle were not subjected to a stunning process, prior to slaughter, with a device injecting compressed air or gas into the cranial cavity or to a pithing process.
  6. Products intended for export to China are derived from cattle that have passed ante-mortem and post-mortem inspection and have been found fit for human consumption.
  7. Beef destined to China must be derived from animals raised under the Canadian Beta-Agonist Free Beef Certification Program developed by the Canadian beef industry. Please refer to Annex V of the Introduction section of Chapter 11. As an alternative, the Canadian Program for Certifying Freedom from Growth Enhancement Products (GEP) for the Export of Beef to the EU Annex R of the EU, recognized by CFIA also meets this requirement.
ii) Requirements for Export of Bone-in Beef :

For the purposes of this requirement, frozen beef refers to frozen bone-in beef derived from cattle less than 30 months of age at the time of slaughter, excluding the head, hoof, viscera/offal, diaphragm, ground beef, mechanically separate beef and other by products.

1. Animal Health Requirements

A. The CFIA will officially confirm to AQSIQ its freedom from foot and mouth disease, contagious bovine pleuropneumonia, lumpy skin disease, and peste des petits ruminants.

B. The live cattle from which the frozen beef is derived should:

  • 1) be born, raised and slaughtered in Canada;
  • 2) originate from farms, confirmed by CFIA and AQSIQ, that do not have any risk of BSE; not be the suspicious and confirmed case of BSE or the members of the known birth or feed cohort of a BSE case; not be born 12 months prior to/after birth of the BSE case cattle.
  • 3) originate from farms where there has been no confirmed clinical sign of rift valley fever, Aujeszky's disease(Pseudorabies), brucellosis, anthrax, tuberculosis, paratuberculosis, blue tongue, bovine viral diarrhoea/mucosal disease, bovine anaplasmosis, enzootic bovine leukosis,infectious bovine rhinotracheitis/infectious pustular vulvovaginitis for the past 12 months; no confirmed clinical signs of bovine genital campylobacteriosis and trichomonosis has occurred during the last 6 months. This requirement is met based on ante-mortem and post-mortem inspection.
  • 4) originate from premises not under quarantine in accordance with the OIE, Canadian and Chinese animal health regulations for the past 6 months;
  • 5) have never been fed with meat-and-bone meal or greaves derived from ruminants before; and,
  • 6) Are less than 30 months of age at the time of slaughter.
2. Certification Requirements

The Canadian official veterinarian will attest, through the export certificate, that:

  • 1) frozen beef comes from cattle that;
    1. have been slaughtered, processed and stored at establishments approved by China;
    2. have not been fed with restricted veterinary drugs or feed additives prohibited by China and Canada;
    3. originate from farms, confirmed by CFIA and AQSIQ, that do not have any risk of BSE; not be the suspicious and confirmed case of BSE or the members of the known birth or feed cohort of a BSE case; not be born 12 months prior to/after birth of the BSE case cattle;
    4. have been subjected to ante- and post-mortem inspections with favorable results in accordance with the relevant Chinese import requirements; and,
    5. are healthy and free of clinical signs of infectious disease, and no lesion has been found on the carcasses and viscera, from which the major lymphatic nodes and gland tissue have been removed;
  • 2) during the slaughter process the cattle were not subjected to a stunning process, prior to slaughter, with a device injecting compressed air or gas into the cranial cavity, or to a pithing process;
  • 3) the specified risk materials (SRMs) have been removed in a safety and sanitary manner to avoid contamination according to Canadian regulations, which includes tonsils, distal ileum, brains, eye, spinal cord, skull, vertebral column, dorsal root ganglion (DRG);
  • 4) all the carcasses of slaughtered cattle, prior to deboning have been chilled and submitted to maturation at a temperature C to 7°C for a minimum period of 24 hours following slaughter. Before the product is cut, the internal temperature (warmest part) of the carcass is 7°C or less according to Canadian regulations;
  • 5) the frozen beef exported to China is subject to the National Chemical Residue Monitoring Program and the National Microbiological Monitoring Program, and that the residue level of the veterinary medicinal products, pesticides and environmental pollutant such as heavy metals, as well as other undesirable substances contained in the products do not exceed the maximum residue limits (MRL) stipulated by China and Canada, and the frozen beef exported to China is free from contamination of pathogenic agent prescribed in the laws and regulations of China and Canada. The frozen beef is hygienic, safe, and fit for human consumption; and,
  • 6) the beef is derived from cattle that were under 30 months of age at the time of slaughter, and originated from farms, slaughterhouses and establishments which have implemented an effective identification system to their place of origin.

The cattle for slaughter and intended for export will not be allowed to come into contact with any live cattle or other species of animal which do not comply with the animal health requirements for export of bone-in beef to China, including Over Thirty Month (OTM) cattle (refer to d) ii,1) during the period of transportation (including transportation from the farm to, and at the place of, the slaughterhouse). The frozen beef intended for exportation to China is not allowed to be processed with any:

  • 1) products of other species origin; or,
  • 2) animal products which do not meet the animal health requirements for bone-in beef including OTM cattle (refer to d) ii,1).

    A specific area identified clearly within the cold store will be available exclusively for the storage of the frozen beef intended for export to China.

e) Establishments approval process for beef and pork products:

The slaughtering and processing (including cutting and storing) plants and federally registered cold storage facilities exporting pork and beef to the People's Republic of China shall be under the supervision of the competent authorities of Canada and in compliance with the relevant laws and regulations of Canada and China on veterinary health and public health. The export establishments recommended by Canada will be registered by the Certification and Accreditation Administration of the People's Republic of China (CNCA) according to the Regulations for Administration of Registration of Foreign Food Establishments (AQSIQ Decree 145, 2012). Products from processing establishments that have not received registration from CNCA will not be allowed to import into the People's Republic of China. Prior approval of slaughter, processing and cold storage establishments is required for pork and beef products to comply with the provisions of the applicable protocol. The approval procedure is as follows:

  • The CFIA will provide the Chinese Inspection and Quarantine Service (CIQ-SA) with a list of establishment(s) wishing to be approved to export to China. Each establishments on the presented list must provide:
    • A completed Annex F: Application for Export of Meat and Meat Products to P. R. China
    • If a cold storage facility, a completed Annex G: Declaration of cold storage
    • If a cold storage facility, a completed Annex H: Form of storage capacity of meat establishments
    • Annex J: Declaration of Conformity, to be completed by the Food Import and Export Division (FIED)
    • Declaration of the third-party cold storage: The processing establishment must specify the third-party cold storage in the application if intended to store their products at a third-party cold storage before exporting to China. The applicant establishment shall supervise and validate the product temperature during storage and transportation to the cold storage.
  • CIQ-SA will determine which establishment(s) will be inspected.
  • CIQ-SA will inform the CFIA of its intention to inspect establishments and will require CFIA's assistance to facilitate the inspection.
  • CIQ-SA will perform the inspection and will provide the CFIA with the inspection reports of the establishments visited. CIQ-SA will establish a committee of experts to review the inspection reports and will inform the CFIA, in a timely fashion, of the list of approved establishments and, if applicable, will advise of further action to be taken in the case of the establishments that were not approved. As deemed necessary, the CFIA will review establishments, prior or after CIQ-SA inspections, and will make recommendation to CIQ-SA as appropriate.

In consultation with interested parties, the CFIA will coordinate applications and the request for inspection by Chinese authorities. Applicants will have to cover the costs related to the Chinese inspection. The CFIA will also transmit to all concerned the result of inspection upon receipt from China.

The CFIA will inspect the establishments as necessary, both before and after CIQ-SA inspections, and will make suitable recommendations to CIQ-SA.

Refer to Annex 1 for the list of approved establishments.

Note: The Chinese authorities reserve the right to inspect approved establishments at any time. Should the inspection reveal that the situation at the establishment is not in conformity with the information provided in the inspection questionnaire completed as part of the approval process, the Chinese authorities will suspend export privileges of the establishment.

f) Cooked or Raw frozen products stuffed with meat or meat ingredients (bun, dumpling, pie)

Cooked or raw frozen products stuffed with ingredients including meat in a wheat-flour based shell or wrapper can be exported to China. An on-site audit of Canadian production facilities by the Chinese authorities will be required before export of these products may begin.

The meat ingredients in such products intended for export to China must be eligible for export to China.

When legally imported meat is used as an ingredient, the eligibility of the imported meat for export to China must be verifiable through import documentation. These import documents must specifically have a statement by the competent authority of the exporting country that the meat product is eligible for export to China.

Exporters must ensure that the exported products meet Chinese regulatory requirements for processing, packaging, labelling, storage and transportation. Specific or additional inspection procedures

Edible pork by products

After pre-cooling (as described in MOP Chapter 17, section 17.11.4 Cooling Performance Requirements for the Chilling of Carcasses and Cuts), the temperature of the final packaged edible pork by-product (head, hoof, tail, fat, blood, bone, organs, tongue, heart, liver, lung, kidney, stomach and intestine (except salted natural casing)) destined to China must be maintained below 3 degrees Celsius during storage.

The operators of Canadian establishments are required to develop a written program which must be reviewed and found satisfactory by the CFIA inspector responsible. Additional certification

  1. Only form CFIA/ACIA 4159 needs to be completed for shipments destined to China. Form CFIA/ACIA 1454 need not be completed. Part 2 of form CFIA/ACIA 4159 must be sent to Ottawa in lieu of form CFIA/ACIA 1454.


  1. A new version of Form CFIA/ACIA 4159 is available to CFIA inspectors.
    • This updated version is a PDF fillable form that must be printed on legal size paper.
    • The batch number(s) should be either on certificate CFIA/ACIA 4159 or CFIA letter head signed and stamped by the same veterinarian signing the export certificate.
    • When the PDF fillable electronic version is completed by the applicant, it must be printed on blank paper, the CFIA/ACIA 5744.
    • Form CFIA/ACIA 5744 contains security features and must be ordered specifically for this purpose. Refer to 11. 3. (5) (b) for details on ordering export certificates.
  2. Some ports of entry in China require that shipments be accompanied with a Certificate of Origin. Annex C can be issued at the request of the operator/exporter for that purpose. Special marking and packaging requirementss

The product shall be wrapped in new packaging materials complying with international hygienic standards. The name and weight of the product, the name of the manufacturer, the inspection and quarantine certificate number for the product, the storage conditions, the date of production and the registration number of the manufacturer approved by CIQ-SA shall appear with the meat inspection legend on the label of the package. The shipping container must bear the export stamp confirming that the export inspection was considered satisfactory.

The frozen beef exports to China will be labelled with the name, country of origin, establishment registration number and the batch numbers on the interior package. The name, specifications, place of origin (province/city), establishment registration number, lot numbers, destination (China only), production date (year/month/day), shelf life and storage temperature would be labelled on the exterior package in Chinese. The meat inspection legend of Canada will be identified on the package.

The labels of prepackaged beef will comply with the standards and regulatory requirements of China on pre-packaged food labelling. During transportation, the package of the products would not be unwrapped or changed.

A plastic liner must be used to package pork products. Stockinets are not allowed to be used to package products destined to China.

During the storage and transportation, the product destined for the People's Republic of China shall meet the Canadian and Chinese veterinary hygienic and public health requirements, and shall be prevented from being contaminated by poisonous and harmful substances. After loading of the product, the container shall be sealed with an official seal under the control of a CFIA officer and the seal number shall appear on the inspection and quarantine certificate.

China accepts only shipments with official CFIA seal. When the CFIA seal is lost or broken on route to China or is broken under foreign country supervision due to a change of container, this shipment either has to come back to Canada or rerouted to another country. No letter of correction will be issued from CFIA. Other requirements

To prevent from contamination by undesirable substances, the frozen beef to be exported to China will meet the sanitary health requirements of China and Canada during packaging, storage and transportation. The storage and transportation will be under suitable temperatures maintaining the core temperature of the frozen beef no higher than −18°C.

Disease Occurrence

If there is any outbreak of bovine infectious or parasitic diseases which are stipulated in List A by Chinese laws and regulations or stipulated in section A of Animal Health Requirements, the CFIA will stop the export of beef to China, recall the products and other products with potential risk, inform China, and provide China with information on how the incident happened and was controlled.

When there are any occurrence in Canada of the infectious or parasitic diseases relevant to bovine, listed under section B of Animal Health Requirements, or defined as list B by Chinese laws and regulations, or any other significant food contamination which may likely to contaminate beef products, the CFIA will stop the exportation of the frozen beef produced in relevant zones/compartment immediately, recall of the products and other products with potential risk, inform AQSIQ and provide information on how the incidents happened and were dealt with.

If a new case of BSE is confirmed in Canada, the CFIA will carry out an epidemiological investigation according to OIE Terrestrial Animal Health Code recommendations. The CFIA will inform AQSIQ of the progress of the investigation. If the epidemiological investigation results in a change to the current BSE risk status officially recognized by OIE, the CFIA will stop the trade of beef exports to China. If a new case of BSE has been found at the time of slaughter, the CFIA:

  1. stop the exportation of beef derived from the cattle which were members of the known birth or feed cohort of a BSE case;
  2. recall of the products which have been issued the export certificates; and,
  3. notify China immediately and share the relevant information in detail.
  4. At the end of the investigation, the CFIA and AQSIQ will enter into discussions to reinstate trade based on the international practice.

Non-Compliant Product

If the frozen beef exported to China is found to be non-compliant by China, with the requirements stated in this proposed agreement, AQSIQ will notify the CFIA in a timely manner of the recall, destruction or other disposal of the non-compliant product. The CFIA and AQSIQ will cooperate with each other to investigate the reason for the non-compliance and take corrective actions to prevent recurrence. Notification of the issuance of export certificate

Please consult Annex K, Authorized Veterinarians to Sign Export Certificates for China, for the list of veterinarians authorized to sign export certificates for China.

The Chinese authorities require direct notification from the CFIA of certain information on shipments of meat products certified for export to assist them in their determination of the integrity of the export certificates received in China.

The following procedures must be implemented in response to the request received from the Chinese authorities:

  1. The applicant will complete the electronic Excel version of the table "Weekly List of Export Certificates Issued for China" shown in Annex D, available from the Veterinary Operations Specialist – Meat Export or substitute, and at the end of the week will send them by email at the following address: mpdexportchina@inspection.gc.ca with cc to the applicant's inspector (the one assigning the certificate).

    Note: if a certificate must be cancelled, there is a specific tab on Annex D for this purpose. This is to be used only for certificates which have been submitted to the mpdxportchina@inspection.gc.ca address

  2. The applicant will provide a hard copy of Annex D which was sent to mpdexportchina@inspection.gc.ca initialed by the designated establishment's contact person to the applicant's inspector the same day for verification and record purposes.
  3. The applicant's inspector will verify the information contained in Annex D received and document the verification conducted by putting his/her initial and the date of verification on Annex D. The copy of Annex D will be kept on file with part 3 of the export certificates. If a discrepancy is identified the inspector will inform the applicant and the Veterinary Operations Specialist – Meat Export or substitute, so that appropriate corrective action can be taken by the applicant.

    Note: the verification can be performed the next working day following the receipt of Annex D, when the certificates are assembled and sent to the Supervisor, Import control and Data Information Center (see below).

  4. Under routine procedures, the applicant's inspector collects all certificates issued and sends the applicable copy to Ottawa (see section 11.3(a)(i)). In the case of export certificates issued for products destined to China, the applicant's inspector will collect part 2 of form CFIA/ACIA 4159 and mail them separately by the next working day following the receipt of Annex D to the Supervisor of the Import Control and Data Information Center at the following address:

    Import Control Division
    Camelot Court, 59 Camelot Drive
    Ottawa, Ontario
    K1A 0Y9

    Attention: Supervisor, Import Control and Data Information Center

    Note: In case of issuance of replacement certificate, a photocopy of part 3 of the certificate replaced must be attached to part 2 of the replacement certificate and the corresponding annex, as applicable, to clearly identify the link between the two documents when received by the Import Control Division (ICD). In case of cancellation of a certificate, a photocopy of part 3 of the certificate bearing the word "void" must be sent to the ICD.

  5. The information received from the applicant will be forwarded to the Chinese authorities by the Food Import Export Division (FIED) as per their request. In order to prevent delays at the border, the applicant bears full responsibility for providing accurate and timely information as it will be used by the Chinese authorities for import control.
  6. If shipment is held due to wrong information submitted to Chinese authorities, Annex D should not be resubmitted to the FIED; instead the applicant's inspector and Veterinary Operations Specialist – Meat Export or substitute should be contacted.
  7. In case exporting establishments determine that a change needs to be made in the information submitted on Annex D to China, they should send their request to the Veterinary Operations Specialist – Meat Export or substitute for review. The following information should be included in the request: the certificate number, the information that was submitted on Annex D, the new information, and the date of submission of Annex D to MPDExportChina@inspection.gc.ca account. The Veterinary Operations Specialist – Meat Export or substitute will then forward acceptable requests by email to MPDExportChina@inspection.gc.ca account. Chinese authorities requested that all the correction requests regarding Annex D should be sent by MPDExportChina@inspection.gc.ca account.

See a CFIA inspector to obtain certificates.

Date modified: