Vietnam will lift its remaining ban on white offal on Sept. 1, 2013, although it will simultaneously impose several new conditions on imports of the animal product, according to the European Commission.
In July 2010, Vietnam introduced a ban on imports of animal offal, saying it was necessary to ensure food safety and hygiene for consumers. However, the European Union did not consider the ban to be in line with World Trade Organization rules, and following continued concerns expressed by the EU and other trading partners, Vietnam partially lifted its ban on pork, poultry and bovine “red offal,” such as heart, kidney and liver, in the spring of 2011, although it kept the ban in place for “white offal,” such as tendons, brains, marrow and intestines.
Although the ban for white offal will be lifted in September, the new conditions on imports of the product include a limitation to use only three ports of entry into Vietnam, as well as additional registration and certification requirements.
“Trading partners have not been consulted on these new measures and it remains to be seen whether exports of offal will now take place in trade friendly conditions,” the EC said in a written statement.