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China talks focus on Jersey cow

15 June 2011

Ministers have been promoting Jersey’s world-class dairy herd in China this week. Chief Minister, Senator Terry Le Sueur, and Assistant Chief Minister, UK and International Relations, Senator Freddie Cohen, held positive talks with Vice President of the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS), Mr Tang Huajun, in Beijing yesterday (14 June).

The meeting took place at CAAS, China’s national agricultural research organisation which employs 10,000 people in 38 research institutes located across 17 provinces. Senators Le Sueur and Cohen used the opportunity of a face to face meeting with Mr Tang Huajun to increase awareness of Jersey’s newly developed programme to export high-quality Jersey bovine genetics.

Jersey’s Director of Environmental Management and Rural Economy has now been invited to speak at the third Sino-European Agricultural Seminar and Agricultural Projects Matchmaking Conference in China in August 2011. With more than 100 key delegates from China and Europe, the conference will be an important opportunity to build upon yesterday’s valuable talks.

Also, representatives of CAAS have already contacted the Ministerial delegation following their meeting to discuss arrangements for a delegation of scientists to visit Jersey. Areas of mutual cooperation could be animal husbandry, especially concerning dairy production and quality control, and Jersey cow breeding and feeding.

China’s economy is the second largest and the fastest growing in the world, and with agriculture constituting around 10 per cent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), China is viewed by Ministers as a key partner for potential trade in this area. The Community Provisions (Bovine Embryos) (Jersey) Regulations 2010 now puts Jersey in a position to explore the possibility of exporting bovine genetics, along with advisory services designed to share the Island’s expertise and to help develop breeding programmes for the Jersey cow abroad.

Senator Cohen commented: “This is a tremendously exciting opportunity for Jersey. Not only is the Jersey cow our greatest ambassador but it is proving to be important economically. It is a great honour that our Director of Environmental Management and Rural Economy has been invited to speak at such a prestigious international gathering and this further signifies the importance and success of our visit to China.”

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