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Breaches of Free Trade Rules in Exports into EU of Poultry from the USA - 02/11/2009
 

A Dispute for Adjutication by the World Trade Organization

The EU is involved in a long-running dispute over its ban on imports of poultry carcases treated with 4 types of disinfectants.  The USA claims the EU is breaking its free-trade obligations by blocking imports of poultry carcases treated with chlorine dioxide, acidified sodium chlorite, trisodium phosphate and peroxyacids.  The USA has formally called on the World Trade Organization (WTO) Disputes Panel to adjudicate over the ban by the EU, which must prove that it is based on health grounds, “relying on good, objective science.”

The USA’s Trade Representative office spokesperson, Nefeterius McPherson says: The USA poultry subject to the ban is safe.  There is no scientific evidence that the use of pathogen-reduction treatments pose any health risks to consumers.  However these compounds are used in the EU for various purposes in the UK, eg for chlorination, oxidation and “improvement” in the bakery and meat industries and they could cause chemical changes yielding toxic substances, for which recourse to the precautionary principle would be required and assessed prior to a decision.  The USA’s controls over the slaughter of poultry seem inferior to the EU’s in terms of hygiene and welfare.

 

 
 
 

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