USDA suspends all imports of fresh beef from Brazil over safety concerns
The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has suspended all imports of fresh beef products from Brazil due to safety concerns.
The suspension will remain effective until the Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture takes appropriate measures that comply with the USDA’s satisfactory standards.
Since March, the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) has been thoroughly inspecting all Brazilian meat imports and has so far denied entry to 11% of fresh beef products from the country.
This rate is higher in comparison to the rejection rate of 1% of shipments coming from other parts of the world.
Until now, FSIS is reported to have refused entry to nearly 1.9 million pounds of Brazilian beef products on grounds of public health concerns, sanitary conditions, and animal health issues.
US Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue said: “Ensuring the safety of our nation’s food supply is one of our critical missions, and it’s one we undertake with great seriousness.
“Although international trade is an important part of what we do at USDA, and Brazil has long been one of our partners, my first priority is to protect American consumers.
“That’s what we’ve done by halting the import of Brazilian fresh beef. I commend the work of USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service for painstakingly safeguarding the food we serve our families.”
Meanwhile, the Brazilian Government has assured that all the concerns raised by the US will be addressed while imposing self-suspension on five facilities from shipping beef to the country.
Image: Fresh meat. Photo: courtesy of Frans Andersson via Freeimages.com.