Ban on Brazilian meats should be "seriously considered", says TD

Reports suggest Brazil may have been exporting contaminated meat products to Europe for several years

Ban on Brazilian meats should be "seriously considered", says TD

Beef on display for sale in Dublin | Image: Julien Behal / PA Archive/PA Images

A Fianna Fáil TD is calling for a ban on the importation of meats from Brazilian amid contamination fears.

Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Agriculture Charlie McConalogue said he is "deeply disturbed" by recent reports accusing meat processors in Brazil of bribing health inspectors to get certificates.

Deputy McConalogue said a ban on the import of Brazilian meat will have to be seriously considered until the issue has been resolved.

"Considering the EU is one of the main markets for Brazilian beef and poultry exports, contingency actions need to be put in place to safeguard European consumers from substandard meat product," he said. "This includes an immediate ban on all Brazilian meat imports to the EU.

"It is paramount that meat imports into Europe meet premier EU safety standards and that animal traceability conditions are maintained."

Brazil is currently the world’s largest exporter of red meat.

Potential sanctions

Authorities in Brazil suspended over 30 government officials in response to allegations that some of the country’s biggest meat processors have been “selling rotten beef and poultry for years”, according to the reports from the BBC this morning.

Reports said that "three meat processing plants have been closed and another 21 are under scrutiny". While some of the meat produced by the factories is consumed domestically, much of it is exported to Europe. 

Meanwhile, it is believed that Brazil’s Agriculture Minister Blairo Maggi is hurriedly arranging to meet foreign ambassadors over the coming days in a bid to prevent sanctions being imposed on Brazil’s beef and poultry exports.