Brazil under fire in dodgy meat scandal

Mar 21, 2017, 00:32
Brazil under fire in dodgy meat scandal

Chile's Agriculture Minister Carlos Furche confirmed on Twitter that the Chilean Government was imposing a "temporary" ban on meat imports from Brazil.

Common shares of BRF and JBS fell as much as 10 percent early on Monday after posting heavy losses on Friday.

A charm offensive by President Michel Temer, who even invited foreign ambassadors to a traditional meat restaurant in the capital Brasilia late Sunday, failed to calm importers.

Brazil's president has played down a corruption scandal that's tarnished its valuable meat industry.

China, which accounted for almost one-third of the Brazilian meatpacking industry's $13.9 billion in exports past year, suspended imports of all meat products from Brazil as a precautionary measure.

"We have sent a letter to the EU Commission calling for our safety standards to be met and for Mercosur countries (Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay and Venezuela) to ensure the individual traceability of cattle", said secretary general Pekka Personen. Three meat processing plants have been closed and 21 others are being investigated.

Police named BRF, the world's largest poultry producer, its giant rival JBS SA, and dozens of smaller rivals in a two-year probe into how meatpackers allegedly paid off inspectors and politicians to overlook practices including processing rotten meat and shipping exports with traces of salmonella.

CHINA has placed a temporary ban on Brazilian meat imports, following dramatic weekend media reports published across the world suggesting a major meat industry scandal is unfolding in Brazil.

In a statement, the company said it has complete confidence in its production processes and in the integrity of its products. "What we have are containers there that can't leave the port to local markets".

Mr Temer set up the meeting with ambassadors following inquiries from the European Union and China over the scandal.

JBS, the biggest meat processer in the world, said in a filing that none of its executives were singled out in the investigation and that its headquarters were not targeted.

"It is an enormous waste".