April 28, 2009


South Korea steps up inspections of pork imports from Americas


South Korea had decided to step up safety inspections of pork imported from Canada, Mexico and the US, amid the swine flu outbreaks.


Since Saturday (Apr 25), the government has tightened quarantine measures for pork from the US and Mexico after reported outbreaks of swine flu in the two countries.


The National Veterinary Research and Quarantine Service said that US and Mexican pork to be imported from Monday (Apr 27) will be quarantined to check if it was infected with swine flu.


The measure is aimed at assuring consumers and is a part of precautionary steps taken against all pork imports from North America, a ministry official said.


The move came after the World Health Organisation confirmed that several people had been diagnosed with swine flu in the countries, with 149 deaths in Mexico associated with the disease.


In the first quarter of 2009, South Korea imported 28,726 tonnes of pork from the US and 208 tonnes of pork from Mexico.


South Korea has found a suspected case of swine flu in a woman who recently returned from Mexico, with health authorities currently carrying out clinical tests on her, officials said.

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