EU - Concerns over the Russian action to close of the market to fully processed pig meat products were the focus of ministerial level talks in Lithuania last week.
The talks took place as the Polish Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Marek Sawicki, visited the AGROBALT 2014 Fair in Kaunas, Lithuania at the invitation of the Minister of Agriculture of the Republic of Lithuania, Vigilijus Jukna.
The Fair provided also an opportunity for a bilateral meeting between the ministers.
The discussions covered mainly the situation on the pig meat market and measures undertaken to overcome the difficulties in the sector.
The meeting was held on the day when the veterinary service of the Russian Federation announced a ban on export of ready meat products from Poland and Lithuania.
Minister Sawicki presented the measures undertaken in relation to finding two wild boars infected with ASF on the territory of Poland, near the border with Belarus.
These measures were introduced in the designated zones of restriction and protection (buffer zones).
At the same time, he said that Poland is at the stage of introduction of the compensation scheme for pig farmers in the designated zone eligible for such compensations.
Minister Sawicki emphasised the need to seek support possibilities for farmers conducting activity in the remaining regions of the country in relation to the difficulties with pig meat export also to the third countries.
The head of the Polish Ministry of Agriculture discussed the issue with the Ambassador of Japan who has also visited the Agrobalt fair.
Lithuanian Minister of Agriculture Jukna shared the concerns about the pig meat market development related to the sanctions imposed due to finding two dead wild boars infected with ASF on the area of Lithuania in January this year.
The case of Lithuania covers 3,000 pigs.
Minister Jukna is preparing an application to the European Commission to introduce compensation for farmers.
During the bilateral talks Minister Sawicki also raised the issue of the need to introduce measures to prepare a soft landing for the dairy sector one year before the abolition of milk quotas.
Poland does not support the abolition of the quota system.
Lithuania uses 80 per cent the available level of milk quotas and so does not fall into the penalties for exceeding quota.
However, Minister Jukna said that he would be very flexible with regard to the issue.