Russia could halt poultry imports from 2011
Russia, which until recently was the largest export market for US chicken, may not need to import poultry meat from 2011, according to Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.
The Interfax agency quoted Putin as saying, "I think that next year and in the following years we basically can do without the imports. More so, because quite often our sanitary authorities have doubts about the production, transportation and storage of the products."
In September, Russia's top meat producer Cherkizovo said the country could become self-sufficient in poultry meat and pork before 2013, the target set by the Agriculture Ministry.
Last month Moscow allowed all but one of 26 US poultry slaughter and processing plants to again ship poultry to Russia following concerns about a chlorine rinse used in US processing plants to kill pathogens that can cause food poisoning.
The United States shipped 733,000 tonnes of poultry meat to Russia worth $752 million in 2009. The US quota for 2010 was set at 600,000 tonnes. Putin stated that this year imports from the US had fallen to 300,000 tonnes of poultry.
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