4 May 2001
Russian pig prospects show promise

By FWi staff

BRITAIN will have better than ever prospects of selling pigmeat to Russia once foot-and-mouth restrictions are finally lifted, says the Meat and Livestock Commission.

Russia currently requires a Russian vet had to be present in any plant that exports pigmeat to it.

This increases costs dramatically and makes British pigmeat uncompetitive creating an “invisible trade barrier”, according to the MLC

MLC export product manager Bent Windahl said the commission has helped persuade Russia to drop this requirement.

He claims to have set the wheels in motion in a conversation with the Russian agriculture minister at the Royal Show last year.

“This is good news as it means we can export to Russia much more easily and be competitive with our European partners who are already in that market.

“We are not expecting the volumes to be huge but it will be an expanding market for us.”

But the agreement will be irrelevant until the foot-and-mouth export restrictions are lifted.

The MLC says Russia will probably require Britain to be free of foot-and-mouth for six months before exports can restart.

However, there may be scope for flexibility on this.

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