OTTAWA, Ontario – Canada has amended its beef cattle marketing regulations to include a new levy of $1 per head of cattle marketed in Canada. The levy, which will be applied to importers, will include beef cattle, beef and beef products.

“This is good news for Canadian beef producers and the cattle industry,” said Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz. “This new levy will provide a stable funding source for research, market development and promotion activities on domestic and imported beef and beef products.”

Canada Beef, which is responsible for domestic and international beef and veal market development, applauded the amendment that will treat importers the same as Canadian cattle and beef buyers. Canada Beef expects to collect an estimated C$600,000 to C$800,000 (US$582,118 to US$776,149) annually, depending on market conditions. The organization hopes to begin collecting the levy as early as September.

“These regulations give Canada Beef the right to collect a levy on imports of beef cattle, beef and beef products, something that has not been done before on other agricultural products coming into Canada,” said Canada Beef Chairman Chuck Maclean. “This is a significant step forward for not only the beef industry but for the Canadian agriculture sector.”

The additional money from the import levy would significantly increase funding of marketing, promotion and research for the beef industry, according to the organization. Canada Beef is funded and run by cattle producers. The organization has offices in Canada, Mexico, Japan, Hong Kong, China, Taiwan and South Korea.