Breaking News on Global Meat Trading and Processing

Headlines > Industry & Markets

Read more breaking news



EU checks expose ‘serious risk’ from Brazil meat

Post a comment
Oscar Rousseau

By Oscar Rousseau+

Last updated on 16-Jun-2017 at 13:25 GMT2017-06-16T13:25:33Z

Vytenis Andriukaitis accused Brazil of 'systematic failures' in food safety controls
Vytenis Andriukaitis accused Brazil of 'systematic failures' in food safety controls

Tougher food safety checks on Brazilian imports prevented meat and poultry contaminated with salmonella and E.coli from entering Europe, according to a senior EU official. 

European health commissioner Vytenis Andriukaitis said reinforced control checks carried out at EU boarders led to the rejection of over 100 consignments of Brazilian meat destined for Europe.

Among the 108 consignments stopped from entering Europe, 77 were due to presence of salmonella in poultry; four due to the presence of Shiga toxin producing E.coli in beef; two for drug residues in horsemeat; and 25 for other reasons including incorrect certification and cold chain problems.

Reinforced checks for all Brazilian meat entering Europe will now remain in place and Andriukaitis has raised serious concerns about the quality of Brazil’s meat inspection systems four months after a widely publicised tainted meat scandal rocked Brazil.

Brazil ‘failed’ to address ‘shortcomings’

In May, a European food safety audit led by Andriukaitis carried out a comprehensive probe of the systems put in place by Brazil’s government that has been plunged into turmoil by the meat scandal and more recently allegations of corruption.

The European Commission (EC) audit found “a number of systematic failures in the controls” put in place by Brazil.

The six-page document, seen by this site, said the audit uncovered “a range of critical deficiencies”, which were identified particularly in the horsemeat and poultry sectors.

To my regret, Brazilian authorities seem to have failed to act on recommendations to address shortcomings raised in previous audits,” said Andriukaitis on 12 June during an update to EU ministers.

Trio of demands set

Andriukaitis has written to Blairo Maggi , Brazil’s minister of agriculture, livestock and supply, to strongly request the immediate implementation of three measures.

First, the withdrawal of authorisation granted to slaughterhouses and horse-exporting companies eligible to ship horsemeat to the EU. Second, to not grant any new factories a licence to export to the EU; and thirdly to perform microbiological checks on all meat and poultry products destined for the EU.

A new audit of Brazil’s controls has been scheduled for the end of 2017 by the EC.

Blairo Maggi’s office could not be reached for comment at the time of writing.

It is now four months since the rotten meat scandal rocked Brazil. In March 2017, more than 1,000 police launched a major raid on Brazilian factories due to suspicions that government health inspectors were being bribed to turn a blind eye to a food safety issues. Three plants were closed and 21 were placed under government inspection. Of those 21, five were licensed to export meat to the EU.

Post a comment

Comment title *
Your comment *
Your name *
Your email *

We will not publish your email on the site

I agree to Terms and Conditions

These comments have not been moderated. You are encouraged to participate with comments that are relevant to our news stories. You should not post comments that are abusive, threatening, defamatory, misleading or invasive of privacy. For the full terms and conditions for commenting see clause 7 of our Terms and Conditions ‘Participating in Online Communities’. These terms may be updated from time to time, so please read them before posting a comment. Any comment that violates these terms may be removed in its entirety as we do not edit comments. If you wish to complain about a comment please use the "REPORT ABUSE" button or contact the editors.

Related products

Related suppliers