HONG KONG, Sept. 22 (Xinhua) -- Hong Kong's food safety authority decided on Tuesday to suspend the import of poultry products from Saratovskaya Oblast in Russia due to the bird flu outbreaks there.
The Center for Food Safety (CFS) of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) government's Food and Environmental Hygiene Department said that in view of notifications from the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) about an outbreak of highly pathogenic H5N8 avian influenza in Saratovskaya Oblast, the CFS has instructed to suspend the import of poultry meat and products, including poultry eggs, from the above area with immediate effect to protect public health in Hong Kong.
A CFS spokesman said that Hong Kong has currently established a protocol with Russia for the import of poultry meat but not for poultry eggs. According to the Census and Statistics Department of the HKSAR government, Hong Kong imported about 140 tons of frozen poultry meat from Russia in the first six months of this year.
"The CFS has contacted the Russian authorities over the issue and will closely monitor information issued by the OIE on the avian influenza outbreaks. Appropriate action will be taken in response to the development of the situation," the spokesman said. Enditem