Friday, June 23, 2017

US Stops Imported Beef from Brazil for Food Safety Concerns

The US has stopped all importation of fresh beef from Brazil for food safety concerns.  Brazil is the fifth largest exporter of beef to the US.  Since an investigation into the Brazilian meat industry in March, the US has been inspecting all meat products from that country, refusing 11% of those shipments due to "public health concerns, sanitary conditions, and animal health issues."

USA Today
US bans Brazil beef imports over food safety concerns
Roger Yu , USA TODAY
Published 8:39 a.m. ET June 23, 2017 | Updated 0 minutes ago

The United States has banned all imports of fresh beef from Brazil, citing food safety concerns.

The punitive action on the fifth largest beef exporter to the U.S. will remain in place until Brazil takes "corrective action," according a statement from the U.S. Department of Commerce on Thursday.

Brazil shipped about 152.7 million pounds of beef to the U.S. in 2016, up 2%. Only Australia, Canada, New Zealand and Mexico exported more beef to the U.S. last year.

Since March, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service has been inspecting all meat products arriving from Brazil. U.S. officials refused entry to 11% of them, or about 1.9 million pounds, due to "public health concerns, sanitary conditions, and animal health issues," the agency said.

“That figure is substantially higher than the rejection rate of 1% of shipments from the rest of the world,” it said.

The Brazilian government had told the U.S. that it's working to address safety issues, including shutting down five facilities.

“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," said U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue in a statement. "That’s what we’ve done by halting the import of Brazilian fresh beef."

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