Russia has taken an early cue from several other nations in banning poultry products from Britain. The Times of London reported that Japan had previously banned poultry, eggs and even breeding birds from Britain. While Hong Kong has banned exports from Norfolk, which is the epicentre of bird flu alert.
Peter Mandelson, the European Trade Commissioner, is now being urged to put pressure on Russia to accept most British poultry imports and to restrict produce from Norfolk only.
Mandelson is also being urged to take action against Japan's ban on British imports. Under international trade rules countries can impose a ban only when there is a high pathogenic flu strain outbreak, but the virus in Norfolk is of low pathogen.
Meanwhile reports from the BBC state that the ban on exporting British beef, originally imposed in 1996 to prevent the spread of mad cow disease, has officially ended.
The law states that live cattle born after Aug. 1, 1996, are free to be exported, as well as beef from cattle slaughtered after June 15, 2005. Government trade however reported that France and some other European Union states are yet to implement legislation to allow imports of British meat.