Taiwan’s opposition parties push for referendum to block US pork imports

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Taiwan’s opposition parties have started a push for a referendum to block the easing of restrictions on American pork imports, which if passed could endanger a long-mooted free trade deal with the US.

President Tsai Ing-wen announced last month that the government would allow the import of US pork containing the feed additive ractopamine and US beef more than 30 months old.

For the uninitiated, Taiwan has been pursuing a trade deal with the United States for at least 15 years but its strict food safety regulations on meat imports have been a major barrier.