The current system for the certification of internationally traded animal commodities can act as a barrier to developing countries accessing high-value international markets. In this Viewpoint article, Gavin Thomson and colleagues discuss the situation as it stands and identify inconsistencies with respect to the certification process. They suggest ways to address the lack of capacity for credible certification in some developing countries that will encourage market access for livestock commodities. They emphasise the role of mechanisms other than demonstrating that an area of production is free from a range of animal diseases, arguing that this could be of significant benefit to developing regions and countries, but that a reliable and independent system of certification based on international standards is essential.
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