Japan To Buy Poultry From Bird Flu-Free India

Japan has approved importing poultry from India for the first time as Asia’s leading poultry buyer seeks alternatives because of bird flu outbreaks in other countries, an Indian poultry trade official said on Wednesday.

They will be buying raw boneless poultry from India for the first time.

Japan currently bans raw poultry imports from countries such as Thailand and China, which have reported outbreaks of the deadly poultry disease. India has no reported cases of the virus.

Japanese authorities have decided to slaughter about 170,000 chickens at a poultry farm north of Tokyo after an avian flu virus was found there. Tests have shown that the virus is the H5 strain of avian flu, although the exact type is yet to be determined.

Several cases of bird flu have been detected since June, but none of them have been identified as the virulent H5N1 strain, blamed for the deaths of more than 60 people in Asia.

link [today.reuters.co.uk/news/NewsArticle.aspx?type=topNews&storyID=2005-11-09T074459Z_01_YUE920088_RTRUKOT_0_TEXT0.xml&related=true]

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