They banned beef from the European Union and United States during the BSE crisis in 2000, and while that ban was officially lifted three years ago, trade still hasn't resumed.
The Minister continued: "Our agri-food exports to China have increased roughly five-fold from around €200 million in 2010 to almost €1 billion previous year".
"I understand that the Chinese authorities will list a number of our beef establishments within the next few days", Creed said this morning in a statement.
"Primarily it's a triumph for our beef farmers because they're producing quality", Minister Creed told RTÉ's Morning Ireland.More news: Allegiant Air under fire following '60 Minutes' safety report
Three Ireland-based beef processors have gained access to the Chinese market, with five more potentially in the pipeline.
Michael Creed says after years of hard work, the Chinese authorities are ready to accept Irish meat supplies.
"For beef, the door has now been opened and there is a real opportunity for the industry to build on this", said Mr Creed, who is travelling with a trade mission to the massive SIAL food exhibition in Shanghai next month. On Thursday (April 12th), the buyers will join 185 Irish food and drink buyers at the Convention Centre Dublin for a major one-to- one business development event involving 5,000 pre-scheduled Ôspeed- datingÕ style meetings.
The Irish agri-food trade exports to China reached €947 million past year, with the country representing the second-largest market for Irish dairy and pork, reaching €667 million and €100 million, respectively.More news: Three Kenya election board commissioners resign, cite leadership failure
When asked what the message is now to Irish farmers, he said: "The message is, there are exacting demands in worldwide markets and here is another really, really important market - probably the single biggest in volume terms - which is recognising that we are capable of meeting those exacting and demanding standards". Consumption is on the rise and an average annual increase of just 1kg per capita would equate to an additional 1.38 million tonnes of beef per annum.
There are hopes of a further five to follow, and Irish exporters can start sending frozen boneless beef to the world's largest single food market from today.
Although annual per capita beef consumption in China is now 4-6kg, compared to 19kg in Ireland.More news: Jodie Foster Runs a Hospital For Criminals — Hotel Artemis Trailer