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New Vet Certificate for US Imports Wanted

by 5m Editor
2 February 2009, at 6:00am

RUSSIA - Russia's food safety watchdog wants to revise the veterinary certificate for pork imports from the United States as quickly as possible, and introduce a new one on 1 June, according to Russia's Interfax News Agency.

Until then, pork and raw pork products from the US will be imported under tighter laboratory control, a source at the Veterinary and Phyto-Sanitary Oversight Service told Interfax.

The proposal was made after US officials, during a recent video conference between the Russian regulator and USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service, said the US had not assumed the obligation to fulfill Russian veterinary health requirements in pork shipments to Russia, the source said. The current veterinary certificate, introduced in November 2006, does not stipulate that those requirements must be fulfilled, reports Meatingplace.

"We think it necessary to review the current veterinary certificate as soon as possible. A draft of the new form for this document will be sent to FSIS very soon so that it can be introduced on 1 June 2009," Interfax quoted the representative of the Russian regulator as saying.

USDA announced last week that Russia halted pork imports from some major US pork processing plants and cold storage facilities due to export certificate errors.