In comments jointly filed yesterday with the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR), the National Chicken Council, USA Poultry & Egg Export Council, and National Turkey Federation expressed their strong support for USTR’s action via the World Trade Organization (WTO) to have India remove its non-tariff trade barriers for U.S. poultry and related products.

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Chicken parts exports in February this year were 317,781 metric tons valued at $379.04 million, 30.8 percent more than the 242,973 tons in February 2011 and 47.2 percent above the $257.44 million a year earlier. 

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“Despite challenges” world broiler production this year is expected to expand, albeit at a more modest pace than previously forecasted, according to the Livestock and Poultry: World Markets and Trade report issued this week by the Department’s Foreign Agricultural Service. 

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Georgia and Alabama were the top two states for hatching broiler chicks in 2011, according to Hatchery Production 2011 Summary issued this week by USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service. 

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ABC World News on its Wednesday evening broadcast reported about USDA’s proposed poultry inspection rule based on claims from “whistleblower” inspectors and a Food & Water Watch lobbyist who made allegations that poultry plants attempt to skew food-safety tests by adding extra “cleaning agents” such as bleach to the birds when companies know tests are to be performed.

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“Chickens in the United States produced for meat are not given arsenic as an additive in chicken feed or any of the compounds or banned antibiotics claimed in the column,” said NCC President Mike Brown in a letter to the editor of the New York Times published Sunday, April 15, in response to a Nicholas D. Kristof opinion piece, “Arsenic in Our Chicken?.”

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FSIS announced on Thursday that it will extend the comment period 30 days for a proposed rule to modernize poultry inspection.

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Originally scheduled to begin this week in U.S. District Court, a new trial date has been set for October 9, 2012, in an environmental group’s lawsuit accusing a Maryland Eastern Shore farm family of polluting a Chesapeake Bay tributary.

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NCC this week joined a diverse group of business associations, consumer protection organizations, hunger and development organizations, agricultural groups, environmental groups, budget hawks, grassroots groups and free marketers to oppose the Domestic Fuels Act of 2012, which would provide liability protection for retailers, engine manufacturers and fuel producers for any problems that occur as a result of using 15 percent ethanol in engine fuel (E15), a mix recently approved for use by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

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A federal appeals court on Tuesday temporarily blocked the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) from requiring employers to post a notice informing workers of their right to form a union. 

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