The Import Health Standards permit importation of consumer-ready cuts of uncooked pork from countries where the disease Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome (PRRS) is present. PRRS has not been found in New Zealand.
MAF considers the risk of introducing PRRS will be effectively managed by the Import Health Standards, which restrict imports of fresh uncooked pork to cuts that have the lymph nodes removed and weigh no more than 3kg.
"Our extensive assessment, based on the best available science, shows that the risk of PRRS introduction through pork imports will be effectively managed through the application of measures outlined in these standards," MAF Deputy Director-General Standards Carol Barnao says.
"When it comes to biosecurity there is no such thing as zero risk. According to a quantitative risk model, which the Panel recommended MAF develop, the likelihood of the virus being introduced through the importation of uncooked pork would be equivalent to an average of 1 outbreak per 1,227 years," she adds. The model was developed with the assistance of New Zealand and international experts in pig health and production," Carol says.