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Taiwanese officials alerted by pork shipment

Quarantine authorities in Taiwan have vowed to step up border inspections in the wake of information that a batch of Canadian pork was being transhipped to Taiwan from Vietnam - a foot and mouth disease (FMD)-infected country.

Threaten FMD status
The transhipment, if allowed to enter Taiwan, would seriously threaten the nation's listing as a FMD-free country, observers said. Taiwan is currently listed by the World Organisation for Animal Health as an “FMD-free country with vaccination.”

Pan Lien-chou, president of the Swine Association, said that the 3,000 tonne shipment of fresh Canadian pork was denied entry for an unknown reason when it arrived in Vietnam around two months ago.

To reduce its losses, the Vietnamese importer sold the pork to a Taiwanese importer at a discount price, Pan said.

Strict ban
Taiwan imposes a strict ban on fresh meat imports from FMD-infected countries, including imports from FMD-free countries that have stopped over in FMD-infected countries en route to Taiwan. Officials check receipts to determine if imports have stopped in FMD -infected countries and also examine package seals to ensure they have not been tampered with.

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