The Canadian Pork Council is set to lobby EU officials this week to relax restrictions on imports of Canadian pork into Europe, maintaining that it can fill the market gap created by the effect of animal diseases on EU supplies.

Martin Rice, executive director of the council, is due to meet with EU representatives this week in a bid to explain how Canadian food safety standards offer equivalent protection to those in the Europe.

The Council contends that the differences between Canadian and European regulations governing pork plants are not as pronounced as to warrant a lack of EU approval, from a scientific point of view.

"Our systems may be different but they achieve equivalent results and therefore we should have mutual acceptance of our systems," said the Council.

"This is the relationship between Canada and the US [...] and we'd like to have a similar situation vis-à-vis Europe."