1 Aug 2007

Samoa health officials says turkey tail ban should improve country's health

7:15 pm on 1 August 2007

Officials in Samoa say a ban on imports of turkey tail meat from the United States, which comes into force tomorrow should make a significant difference to the country's health.

The government's ban on the fatty offcuts aims to curb the rising incidence of diabetes and high blood pressure.

The Chief Executive Officer of Samoa's Ministry of Revenue and Customs, Silafau Paul Meredith, says the government had already tried putting a five percent duty on turkey tails, but that wasn't enough of a deterrent.

He says though turkey tails might seem like something of a niche food to outsiders, that's the wrong impression.

"Actually it's not a small thing. I don't have the figures on top of my fingertips, but we do import a heck of a lot of turkey tails into the country. So by removing that product you're probably going to improve the nutrition of the country."

Paul Meredith says Samoa has also banned imports of chicken backs, which are another particularly fatty cut of meat.