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Friday June 4, 5:34 am Eastern Time

Italy bans Belgian pigs, pork and pork products

ROME, June 4 (Reuters) - Italy confirmed on Friday it had extended a ban on Belgian poultry and eggs to include imports of pork and pork products due to fears they may contain the carcinogen dioxin.

``The Health Ministry has extended the measures taken on poulty and eggs and has approved, as a precautionary measure, a ban on the import of live pigs, pork and pork products from Belgium,'' the ministry said in a statement.

The ministry said it had also ordered the seizure of all pigs, pork and pork products which had entered Italy since January 15. The meat would be tested for dioxin, it added.

The measures followed the discovery that chicken and egg stocks on some farms in Belgium contained dioxin.

Later it was found that Belgian animal feed containing the highly toxic element could have been fed to swine and cattle both in Belgium and neighbouring countries.


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