European ban targets exporters linked to Brazilian meat scandal
"Replying to a European request, the Brazilian authorities have now confirmed that the establishments involved in the investigation, which were allowed to export to the EU, have had their licences suspended," European Commission spokesperson Enrico Brivio told the Irish Farmers Journal this Tuesday.
Four factories among the 21 under formal investigation were exporting to the EU and their licences are the ones that have now been suspended. According to a list published by the Brazilian government on Sunday, these are Seara Foods Ltd and BRF SA, which exported poultry products to the EU; JJZ Alimentos SA, which exported beef products to the Netherlands; and Breyer & Cia Ltd, which exports the bee glue product propolis to the EU.
Brivio added that while no sanitary alert had been triggered by controls on meat coming from Brazil, the Commission had asked EU member states to be extra vigilant and increase checks on shipments from the South American country.
European Commissioner for Health and Food Safety Vytenis Andriukaitis is due to travel to Brazil next Monday to discuss the issue with the Brazilian minister for agriculture.
'No direct link' with Mercosur trade talks
The Commission was quick to separate the past scandal from Brazil’s ongoing trade negotiations with the Mercosur bloc of American countries. The sides are entering into a new round of talks this week.
“This issue bears no direct link with the ongoing negotiations,” Daniel Rosario, another spokesperson for the institution, said on Monday. He added that the proposed trade deal would include a chapter on “sanitary and phytosanitary measures establishing a strict regulatory framework for all EU imports from Mercosur countries”.
“The future EU-Mercosur trade agreement will not lower, but will reinforce our high regulatory requirements and food safety standards for agricultural imports,” Rosario said.