Brazil Official Statement After Several Countries Have Banned Imports of Meat
Two sources in China confirmed that a ban remained in place on imports from the Seara plant, as well as any meat approved by seven Brazilian veterinary experts linked to the police investigation.
"As the largest importer of meat from Brazil, China expresses concerns about the quality of Brazilian meat".
The Ministry of Agriculture and Agro-Based Industry has not made a decision to stop the import of beef and chicken meat from Brazil, said its Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek. For both meat and poultry, China also was in second place with almost $859.5 million in imports.
The three companies are among 21 being investigated in operation "Weak Flesh", which alleges that additives were used to mask bad meat and that inspectors were bribed to give false certificates of health.
The ministry had announced its decision to delay imports of meat and poultry products from Brazil after the Brazilian authorities suspended 33 government officials from work in a wide-scale crackdown on charges of selling rotten processed meat and poultry.
President Michel Temer welcomed China's ruling and described it in a statement as recognition of Brazil's agricultural-defense system. The fear of a consumer backlash forced Mom's Touch to take the drastic steps after retailers removed Brazilian meat from their shelves, said Heo Jun-gyu, a company spokesman.
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But European farm groups called on the EU Commission on Thursday to take stronger action against Brazilian meat imports because of the scandal.
Brazilian meat is exported to more than 150 countries, with principal markets as far apart as Saudi Arabia, China, Singapore, Japan, Russia, the Netherlands and Italy.
On Wednesday, the government appealed to the World Trade Organization's 163 other members not to impose "arbitrary" bans on the country's more than $13 billion meat export industry.
"Lifting this suspension was the result of a giant effort by Brazil to explain that the investigation targeted the conduct of individuals and not the quality of the meat", Maggi told Reuters.
The president several times has pointed out that only 184 consignments of meat were deemed by importers to be in violation of standards, among the 853,000 consignments exported in 2016.
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