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Saudi Arabia bans poultry products from 6 countries

Heat-processed poultry products are treated in a way that destroys the avian flu virus and are excluded from the temporary ban.
RIYADH: An outbreak of avian influenza prompted the Kingdom to ban imports of poultry products temporarily from six bird flu-affected European and Asian countries.
The Saudi Food and Drug Authority (SFDA) confirmed the temporary ban on imports of poultry meat and eggs after the World Organization for Animal Health reported an avian influenza outbreak.
Announcing the ban late Wednesday, the SFDA said: “The authority has temporarily banned the importing of poultry meat, eggs, their products and equipment from provinces and districts in five countries due to the outbreak of a highly virulent avian influenza.”
“The ban affects Bacs-Kiskun county in Hungary, Kherson province in Ukraine, Lubuskie province in Poland, Friesland county in the Netherlands and provinces of Tarn-et-Garonne and Aveyron in France,” the SFDA said in a statement.
Poultry products from other provinces in these countries, which are thermally processed and certified to be free of bird flu, are not affected.
Heat-processed poultry products are treated in a way that destroys the avian flu virus, and are excluded from the temporary ban.
The Kingdom also temporarily banned imports of poultry products from India due to a bird flu outbreak, the commercial section of the Indian Embassy told Arab News on Thursday.
A senior official from the embassy said that the SFDA has decided to impose a temporary ban on the import of live birds, hatching eggs and chickens from India due to the outbreak of pathogenic avian influenza.
He added that such bans, however, are periodically reviewed and lifted as and when the situation returns to normal.
The Kingdom, the second-largest importer of chicken broiler meat in the world, on previous occasions imposed similar bans on poultry imports from other countries after avian influenza outbreaks, and lifted them when the situation returned to normal.
The avian virus, popularly known as bird flu, is the highly pathogenic H5N2 strain.

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