Canned debate: Should Australian supermarket brands use Aussie beef?


James Nason, BEEF Central (Australia)

February 22, 2021


THE canned corned beef section in Australian supermarkets occupies a tiny portion of aisle space but raises some larger questions about retailer decisions related to local versus imported product.


Fresh beef from Brazil is not permitted for import to Australia on Foot and Mouth and BSE disease risk grounds, but fully cooked beef from Brazil can still enter the country as manufactured or processed product that is ready-to-eat.


An example is canned corned beef, which is superheated under steam pressure during processing to sterilise the contents.


While this import pathway has long been in place, closer analysis also raises the question of why more Australian produced beef is not used in the same product category.


As the below pictures show, canned corned beef products sold under the private labels of the two big Australian-owned supermarkets use beef made in Brazil, rather than Australia:


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