List of Countries Banning UK Poultry Grows Rapidly

UK - As details emerge concerning the Avian Influenza outbreak on a turkey farm in the UK, this report looks at the rapidly growing list of countries who are now banning UK poultry products.
calendar icon 6 February 2007
clock icon 3 minute read

Stocks in the largest U.S. chicken companies were lower on Monday after the deadly bird flu hit a turkey farm in England, but U.S. experts said there was no danger to the $38.5 billion U.S. chicken industry.

"It has to be a knee-jerk reaction to the bird flu," Paul Aho, economist at Poultry Perspective, said of the drop in stocks of such companies as Pilgrim's Pride Corp. and Sanderson Farms Inc.

European Union officials said they were confident Europe's "tried and trusted" defences against avian flu would minimise any impact on trade. European Health Commissioner Markos Kyprianou has insisted that Europe's measures to isolate and restrict regions hit by bird flu will reduce the likelihood of non-EU trade blockades on UK produce.

Russia, Japan, Hong Kong and South Korea moved quickly to ban imports of poultry and eggs from Britain but the National Farmers' Union said the volumes they imported were "not significant enough" to hurt the industry.

South Korea imported about US$3 million in poultry products from Britain last year. It will either cull or return 3,645 ducks imported for breeding that it had in quarantine in the country, the agriculture ministry said.

Hong Kong, which imported 11,400 tons of British poultry and poultry products in the first 10 months of last year, announced late yesterday it would suspend the imports with immediate effect, an official said.

Russia has banned all British imports of live birds, eggs and meat as well as poultry feed and equipment for breeding, butchering and dressing from Feb 5. Moscow has a record of hitting EU member states with meat import bans and European officials downplay the political, and economic, significance of the Russian action.

Japan's import ban, put into place by Tokyo's Agriculture Ministry on Saturday, will hit trade which registered British imports of 160,000 fowl in 2006.

Macedonia has imposed a ban on the imports of poultry and poultry parts from UK, according to reports on Monday. The order for halting was issued on Sunday night by Macedonia's Agriculture Ministry's Veterinary Administration after H5N1 avian flu outbreak on a British bird farm was confirmed, reported Macedonia's independent news agency Makfax.

"Whenever we are notified that bird flu breaks out in a foreign country, we withdraw import licenses immediately. That's what we did last week when bird flu cases were detected in Romania and Hungary," Macedonia's Agriculture Ministry spokesperson Sonja Trajkova was quoted as saying.

Barbados agriculture officials on Monday have also placed a ban on all poultry and poultry products originating from England until further notice.

ThePoultrySite News Desk

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