The bilateral battle over chicken feet is heating up again.
On Wednesday, China defended its decision to impose duties on American poultry parts entering this country, saying that it is playing by the rules.
In a statement on its website, the Ministry of Commerce said: "China believes its anti-dumping and countervailing measures on U.S. chicken products are legal and in line with World Trade Organization rules."
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The statement came after U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk said the United States is pursuing consultations at the World Trade Organization over China's poultry duties.
The chicken spat has been going on for several years, starting with a U.S. congressional ban on cooked chicken from China.
The U.S. says China's tariffs have significantly cut American exports to China of chicken parts — primarily feet and other parts not eaten by most American consumers. Trade officials say American chicken exports to China have dropped by more than 80 percent since 2009.