Major Brussels crack down on Brazilian beef and poultry imports
All Brazilian poultry exports to Europe will be tested for conditions such as salmonella under stringent new regulations introduced by the EU Commission.
Sources in Brussels have indicated the Commission may also delist all Brazilian meat plants which were previously approved for the export of horsemeat to Europe.
The moves follow an audit of Brazilian meat plants which were undertaken last month by officials from the EU's Health and Food Safety Directorate (DG SANTE).
A report on the audit, which were prompted by the recent meat scandal that has rocked the South American state, was published yesterday.
The EU auditors found that controls in Brazil's beef plants were generally in line with the standards required by the EU. However, the Commission has tightened the approval process for plants seeking EU export accreditation.
As a result of the serious deficiencies identified in the DG SANTE audit, sources say the EU Commissioner for Health and Food Safety Vytenis Andriukaitis has written to the Brazilian Minister of Agriculture advising:
That all exports of poultry meat and meat products and preparations from Brazil to the EU must undergo mandatory pre-export microbiological checks, backed-up by a health certificate stating that the consignment had been sampled and analysed for various salmonella strains;
That the approval process for new meat exporting plants will be subject to audits performed by the Commission services on the spot and not by Brazilian authorities;