China says it has banned all Canadian meat imports

China asks for suspension of Canadian meat citing forged certificates

China asks for suspension of Canadian meat citing forged certificates

"Recently, the Chinese Customs authorities have inspected ractopamine residues in a batch of pork products exported from Canada to China", said Chinese Embassy spokesperson Lu Shaye, in a statement.

As a result, "China suspended the import of pork products from the relevant enterprises and required the Canadian side to carry out investigation".

Ractopamine is a feed additive that's banned in certain countries, but it can be used in Canada.

The diplomat says the move is being taken because about 100 faked veterinary health certificates have been identified on exported meat products.

These forged certificates were "sent to the Chinese regulatory authorities through Canadian official certificate notification channel, which reflects that the Canadian meat export supervision system exists obvious safety loopholes", he continued.

Canadian reactions to the announcement have ranged from regret to outrage, sprinkled with speculation that Beijing's move might be related to the ongoing legal drama of Meng Wanzhou, the chief financial officer of Huawei who was arrested in Vancouver on a USA warrant in December.

China will turn away any "meat products" shipped from Canada starting on Wednesday, according to a report in Le Journal de Montreal, citing an official in the office of the Chinese consulate general in Montreal. "The Canadian side believes that this incident is criminal offence", said the embassy statement.

A source from the Agriculture Minister confirmed the report to CityNews reporter Cormac MacSweeney.

China, meanwhile, has detained two Canadians, Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, on suspicion of collecting state secrets for foreign actors. China has also blocked imports of Canadian canola seed.

The official said the Canadian Food Inspection Agency is "seized with the issue and looking into the matter to ensure that all the rules are being followed".

"This is a technical issue related to potentially fraudulent permits", said the official. "Any assertion by the Chinese government to the contrary is both false and baseless", said a statement from Tory agriculture critic Luc Berthold.

Berthold said Trudeau has to "personally raise this issue" with Xi in at the G20 meeting and demand the trade barriers be lifted.

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