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Russian Taste for Turkey Increasing

In 2010, the amount of turkey meat consumed in Russia rose 20.7 percent year on year to 112,000 tons, according to a recent report by Intesco Research Group.

Almost 70 percent of the meat was Russian-raised, a figure that has grown from 2005 to 2010 as imports fell 55.6 percent during the same period. But Russian producers continued to lag behind importers in retail sales, scoring only 40 percent of the market.

Ninety-one percent of imported turkey came in the form of whole, frozen birds, while 5 percent was chilled or fresh turkey parts, and 4 percent was frozen parts.

The average Russian ate less than 1 kilogram of turkey in 2010, far behind the average American's yearly consumption of 8.2 kilograms. British consumers averaged 6.2 kilograms of turkey per year, and Israelis ate a whopping 14.2 kilograms.

The United States is expected to raise 248 million turkeys in 2011, up 2 percent from 2010, when farmers produced 3.2 million tons of turkey, a harvest valued at $4.37 billion, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

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