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Mainland China May Now Export Cooked Poultry to U.S.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service has issued a final rule that effective 9 December will list mainland China as eligible to export poultry products from birds slaughtered in the mainland to the United States. Mainland China is already eligible to export processed poultry products to the United States if the products are derived from poultry slaughtered in the United States or in other countries with a poultry slaughter inspection system equivalent to that of the United States.

Because the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service currently classifies mainland China as a region affected with highly pathogenic avian influenza subtype H5N1 as well as exotic Newcastle disease, mainland China will only be allowed to export fully cooked-not shelf stable poultry products (i.e., no raw poultry or other processed poultry products) to the United States. In addition, this rule only authorises imports of such products from animals slaughtered on or after 9 December.

FSIS states that under this rule all approved poultry products exported to the United States from mainland China will be subject to re-inspection at U.S. ports of entry for transportation damage, product and container defects, labelling, proper certification, general condition and accurate count. In addition, FSIS will conduct other types of re-inspection activities, such as sampling and testing to detect any drug or chemical residues or pathogens that may render the product unsafe or any species or product composition violations that would render the product economically adulterated.

Products that pass re-inspection will be stamped with the official U.S. mark of inspection and allowed to enter U.S. commerce. Those that do not meet U.S. requirements will be refused entry and within 45 days must be exported to the country of origin, destroyed or converted to animal food, depending on the violation.

FSIS observes that mainland China would have to submit additional information and would likely need to undergo an additional audit before FSIS would allow it to export any other processed poultry products to the United States.

Content provided by Picture: HKTDC Research
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