Russia’s ban on pork products from the European Union (EU) may soon come to an end as a result of recent negotiations, several European agriculture leaders say.
The ban, which was implemented in January 2014, was made as a response to the detection of African swine fever (ASF) in wild boars in Poland and Lithuania. Russia later in 2014 further limited its sources for pork when it implemented trade bans on agricultural products from the United States, Canada, Australia and Norway, a move believed by many to be mostly political.
Stephane Le Foll, French minister of agriculture, stated on January 19 that “an agreement in principle was reached on the resumption of French exports of live pigs, offal and pig fat to Russia.”
The European Livestock and Meat Trades Union also stated meetings between EU and Russian officials in Berlin, “should allow a resumption of some products from the pork sector to Russia.”
While some EU leaders are optimistic about the resumption of pork trade with Russia, the U.K. National Pig Association is still skeptical and more work needs to be done to reach an agreement.
“Contrary to various claims, Russia has not yet selectively lifted the import ban,” said Digby Scott, spokesman for the association.