Coming soon, maybe, to a grocery store near you — chicken from China.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture ruled recently that poultry processed in China can now be sold in the United States. But first the birds must be born and raised in the U.S., Canada or Chile. Then they’re exported to China before being shipped back to the Americas.
Food safety experts worry about the quality of chicken processed in a country notorious for avian influenza and food-borne illnesses. And they predict that China will eventually seek to broaden the export rules to allow chickens born and raised in China.
“I’ve never been to China, but my impression is it’s very polluted and the food isn’t always safe,” said Annie Hall, shopping recently at a Kroger’s in Atlanta. “We’ve got chicken farming and processing plants right up the road on I-85. We have enough here already. It doesn’t make sense to ship chickens all over the world.”