Following strong lobbying by IFA in Brussels over the last two weeks, IFA National Livestock Chairman Angus Woods said the Chairman of the European Parliament’s Agriculture Committee Czeslaw Siekierski has tabled an oral question for the plenary agenda in Strasbourg tomorrow (Mon) afternoon on ‘how the Brazilian revelations will impact ongoing trade talks with Mercosur countries?’ and whether it was ‘now time to review bilateral negotiations and remove meat from the trade agenda?’Angus Woods said the EU Commissioner for Health and Food Safety Vytenis Andriukaitis met with the Brazilian Minister of Agriculture Blairo Maggi in Brazil last week over the weak flesh meat scandal and emphasised ‘how it did not help the Brazilian authorities to try to downplay the seriousness of the issue’.
He said Commissioner Andriukaitis will address the Agriculture and Fisheries Council (Luxembourg) earlier tomorrow on the Meat Fraud in Brazil. He said this is an important opportunity for Agriculture Ministers to make their views clear on Brazilian meat imports which fail to meet EU standards and also on strict EU Commission controls.
Angus Woods said the EU Commission has confirmed that none of the 21 establishments directly involved in the weak flesh scandal is now exporting to the EU. In addition, the EU has introduced reinforced checks at points of import involving 100% physical checks and 20% microbiological checks on all Brazil meat shipments into the EU.
The IFA Livestock Leader said the Brazilian weak flesh scandal is a major lesson for the EU Commission in terms of allowing imports from countries which fail to meet EU standards. “It is clear from the weak flesh scandal that the production systems in Brazil fail to meet EU standards and as a result meat imports from Brazil should not be accepted into the EU.”
He said the Brazilian scandal should be regarded as a major setback for Mercosur talks and further access for Brazilian exports to the EU.