EU inspection mission heading to Brazil

by Editor
Tuesday, September 18, 2007

A European Union (EU) mission will head to Brazil in October to inspect procedures related to health, traceability, and movement of animals.

Furthermore a range of other aspects of foot and mouth disease (FMD) control will be investigated. The mission will carry out an audit on whether recommendations made by previous missions have been implemented satisfactorily.

There is concern among Brazilian authorities and industry members that this mission will have increased pressure to find problems in Brazilian production, after members of the EU Parliament submitted an official request to ban Brazilian product earlier this month. This comes as a result of the accusations of sanitary problems released in May, and presented to the Agriculture Committee of the EU Parliament by the Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA) in July.

If the declaration receives support from a majority of members, it will be adopted by the EU Parliament and sent to the European Commission for action, which will investigate and report on the issue (Brazilian Meat Monitor).

The EU Consumer Protection Commission has questioned the accuracy of the IFA’s report, as it involved farms in states which are not currently allowed to export to the EU. Brazil is not obliged to conform to all the controls which farmers in Europe have to comply with, given the different conditions cattle are raised in.

Since 2006, the EU has sent six technical missions to Brazil, all of which approved meat imports from Brazilian, with recommendations for improved controls.

At the same time, Brazil is currently being inspected by a delegation of 20 representatives from the Russian Veterinary Service to evaluate the whole production chain, after 10 beef processing plants were banned in May due to veterinary certification issues.