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Hong Kong suspends poultry imports from Tochigi Prefecture in Japan on bird flu fears

Hong Kong's Centre for Food Safety announced the ban on 15 March after Japan's agriculture ministry announced an outbreak of highly pathogenic H5 bird flu.

16 March 2021, at 7:19am

The Centre for Food Safety (CFS) of the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department announced today that in view of a notification from the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries of Japan about an outbreak of highly pathogenic H5 avian influenza in Tochigi Prefecture in Japan, the CFS has instructed the trade to suspend the import of poultry meat and products (including poultry eggs) from the above-mentioned area with immediate effect to protect public health in Hong Kong.

A CFS spokesman said that according to the Census and Statistics Department, Hong Kong imported about 70 tonnes of chilled poultry meat, about 5,680 tonnes of frozen poultry meat and about 270.17 million poultry eggs from Japan last year.

"The CFS has contacted the Japanese authority over the issue and will closely monitor information issued by the World Organization for Animal Health and the relevant authorities on the avian influenza outbreaks. Appropriate action will be taken in response to the development of the situation," the spokesman said.