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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Russia Raises Threat of U.S. Chicken Ban

Moscow may ban U.S. poultry meat imports from Aug. 1 if Washington fails to update veterinary certificates to meet Russian safety standards, an Agriculture Ministry spokesman said Friday.

"No Russian port will accept U.S. poultry shipments from Aug. 1 without the new certificate," the spokesman quoted deputy chief veterinarian Alexander Ponomaryov as saying. "Lamentably, the U.S. side has not yet prepared a specimen of such a certificate."

Russia banned imports of U.S. chicken and turkey from March 10 to April 15, citing health concerns. U.S. chicken and turkey imports were worth $640 million in 2001.

Russia's decision to announce that it may reimpose a ban suggests trade talks between the two countries are not going well, a U.S. industry group said.

Bill Roenigk, vice president of the National Chicken Council, said Moscow's comments suggested many issues remain to be resolved.

"Yesterday there was limited progress," said Roenigk. "There are many issues still left and progress was made only on a few of them."

Alisa Harrison, spokeswoman for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, said the Aug. 1 deadline was not new and she was unsure why Russia decided to repeat it. "We are still hopeful this issue is going to be resolved," she said.

A technical team of USDA and Food and Drug Administration officials is in Russia this week for talks. It was expected to stay at least through the weekend, the USDA said.