4 Mar 2004

French Polynesian importers concerned over chicken ban

2:50 pm on 4 March 2004

Importers in French Polynesia will meet Ministry of Agriculture officials to discuss a ban on chickens from the United States.

The ban was announced last week following similar moves by the European Union after the chicken flu virus was detected in Texas.

But the Tahiti Presse news Agency quotes importers as saying their imports come from outside Texas, and question long term effects of the ban.

Tahiti also imports some of its chicken from Chile which so far remains virus-free.

Meanwhile, in the neighbouring Cook Islands, importers are reporting difficulties sourcing chicken products from their main trading partner, New Zealand, after being told most stock is being sent to Asia, where the virus has hit hardest.