UK poultrymeat producers are braced for a flood of cheap imports after world trade arbitrators said that lightly salted frozen chicken cuts should be allowed into the EU at a reduced tariff.
The Appellate Body of the World Trade Organisation upheld a WTO decision earlier this year in favour of Brazil and Thailand that was subsequently challenged by the EU.
Under GATT rules, a lower tariff applies to poultrymeat salted for purposes of preservation. However, the EU maintained that some exporters
in Brazil and Thailand were lightly salting huge volumes at levels too low to have any preservative effect simply to qualify for the lower tariff, which is only a third of the general poultry meat tariff of E1.02/kg.
British poultry bosses fear the decision will lead to much higher imports of poultrymeat from Brazil and Thailand.