Rosselkhoznadzor press secretary Alexey Alekseyenko said that authorities were considering imposing a ban on the supply of meat to Russia from companies in Brazil that could not give assurances regarding the drug, and head of Rosselkhoznadzor, Sergey Dankvert, added that this would lead to a “100% ban on the supply of meat products from that country to Russia”.
“Yes, there is a possibility that we will have to completely restrict imports of Brazilian pork and beef. We might have to take these emergency measures because a recent inspection of Brazilian companies showed that none had a reliable system to prevent the use of ractopamine in their products,” said Alekseyenko.
Rosselkhoznadzor has given Brazil’s veterinary service a week from 26 July 26 provide evidence and assurances that no ractopamine is being used in the production of meat supplied to Russia
“Brazil has generally agreed with our claims and, in order to avoid complications in bilateral trade, has undertaken an obligation to develop a number of programmes to allay the concerns of Rosselkhoznadzor,” said officials.
However, it is not clear whether the Brazilian side can actually provide such guarantees.
“This is not the first time that Brazil’s veterinary service has made promises to the Russian side. These promises have not been fulfilled and regular checks by our specialists are still revealing violations. If, in a week or two, Brazil has not taken specific and sufficient measures, then Rosselkhoznadzor will restrict import supplies,” the Russian officials added.
Brazil is now the largest supplier of meat – and in particular pork – to the Russian market. For the first five months of 2013 the supply of Brazilian pork to Russia amounted to 47,900 tonnes, according to data from the country’s State Statistics Service.