April 18, 2007

 

Russian pork imports up by 11 percent
 

 

Imports of pork to Russia have increased by more than 11 percent over the last year amid the rise in local production, according to UK's Meat and Livestock Commission (MLC).

 

The MLC also reported Russian imports from Brazil dropped by 40 percent due to increased imports from Denmark, Germany, US, Canada and other EU countries.

 

The first three months of 2007 had pork imports soaring in Russia that kept prices down by 30 to 40 percent according to MLC economists.

 

In contrast, Russian imports of beef and poultry meat fell by four percent and three percent, respectively, as a result of ban in Brazil due to foot-and-mouth-disease in several provinces.

 

Though it seemed likely Russia would allow Brazil to resume exports, MLC said there is a growing concern that Brazilian raw pork and beef imports may be halted in entering the Russian market due to permit expiry of Russian veterinary inspectors who are currently doing inspections in Brazilian meat plants and no new invitations has been issued. 

 

At the same time, Russia has still not lifted its ban on meat imports from Poland and Ukraine, because of concerns over illegal shipments that were alleged to be unfit.

 

Negotiations have been ongoing with EU and Russia which prevented another potential ban on EU's meat exports over safety issues.

 

Russia has already imposed restrictions on meat imports from specific enterprises in seven countries over salmonella concerns since the onset of 2007. The Russian veterinary service said that salmonella had been detected in large batches of meat delivered from the United States, France, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Brazil and Uruguay since the beginning of 2007.

 

The countries involved have been asked to investigate each case and take measures to prevent similar instances in the future.

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