Troop Support Pacific ensures South Korea DFACs have fresh chicken despite poultry ban

By Michael Tuttle DLA Troop Support Public Affairs

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Despite South Korea’s ban on poultry items from the U.S., service members who eat at dining facilities across the peninsula continue to eat fresh chicken, thanks to Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support Pacific.

South Korea halted imports of U.S. poultry Jan. 17 following the discovery of avian flu at a turkey farm in Indiana.

The Subsistence prime vendor expected to run out of poultry in mid-February, said Ron Bate, a forward logistics specialist at DLA Troop Support Pacific’s [South] Korea Area Office. That left little time to find a local vendor.

The new vendor also needed time to ramp up before the prime vendor’s stock was depleted.

“All of this was projected to happen the same week as a local Korean holiday that was going to basically shut down the country,” Bate said. “This left no room for error.”

The Korea Area Office worked with U.S. Army veterinarians to identify a local vendor able to provide chicken suitable for consumption by American service members, said John Moye, Korea Area Office deputy chief. Then contracting personnel sourced and awarded a blanket purchase agreement for eight-piece chicken.

The first delivery of 351 cases of chicken from the vendor arrived Feb. 5 at the prime vendor’s warehouse in Pyeongtaek, Korea, Moye said. The Korea Area Office team and a contracting officer representative were there to meet the vendors and ensure the chicken was delivered successfully.

The chicken was then transferred to the prime vendor for distribution to 40 military dining facilities throughout South Korea. This process has continued weekly and will continue as long as the Korean poultry ban is in effect, Moye said.

“The transition from (the prime vendor) purchased poultry to the implementation of the BPA vendor product was seamless and transparent to our customers,” Moye said.