The American Meat Instituteâ€™s (AMI) motion for a preliminary injunction to block enforcement of a May 2003 ban on imports of Canadian cattle and beef has been denied. An opinion outlining the courtâ€™s reasoning has not yet been issued.
"The U.S. meat industry continues to believe as strongly as ever that full trade in beef and cattle products with Canada is justified by both the science and by world animal health guidelines," says AMI Senior Vice President of Regulatory Affairs and General Counsel Mark Dopp. "There is truly no scientific, or legal reason why this protracted ban on Canadian beef and cattle should continue," he says.
The ruling comes on the heels of the issuance of an injunction last week by a federal judge in Montana to stop todayâ€™s scheduled reopening of the Canadian border, and the passage of a Senate resolution last week to do the same.
The court decision was welcomed by USDA. Secretary of Agriculture Mike Johanns had removed boneless beef from cattle over 30 months of age from the rule set to go into effect on Monday, March 7. Reuters reports that USDA says it is already underway with the rule-making process and risk analysis to reopen the U.S. border to cattle over 30 months of age.
"We remain committed to continue to work, both in the halls of Congress and in the courts, for full restoration of trade with Canada, and the rest of our global trading partners," Dopp adds.