China/Imports: Is my chicken coming from China, or other countries?

More than 99% of the chicken sold in the United States comes from chickens hatched, raised and processed in the United States. None currently come from China.  Less than 1% of the chicken we consume is imported from Canada and Chile.

I heard that that the U.S. may soon begin importing cooked chicken from China. Is that true?

You may have read that recently the United States and China have agreed to take action by mid-July to expand trade in poultry, beef and U.S. financial firms.  The announcement is the first result of 100 days of trade talks following meetings in the United States between U.S. and Chinese trade representatives. 

Following one more round of technical consultations between the United States and China, China is to allow imports of U.S. beef on conditions consistent with international food safety and animal health standards by July 16, 2017.  In addition, the United States and China are to resolve outstanding issues for the import of China origin cooked poultry to the United States.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service still must take a number of steps, including issuing a proposed rule in the Federal Register along with a public comment period, before it can make a final determination as to whether China is equivalent and thus eligible to export to the United States poultry that was slaughtered and cooked in Chinese establishments.

For Frequently Asked Questions on USDA’s Equivalence of China’s Poultry Processing and Slaughter Inspection Systems, please click here.


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