NFU Scotland believes that calls for a ban on Brazilian beef are
further justified by the recent EU Veterinary report which evaluated
animal health procedures in the Brazilian livestock industry.
About 80% of all cattle in Brazil are based on
tropics-friendly Nelore (zebu-type) genetics.
The latest EU Commission report demonstrates that the country’s
traceability system is still well below the standard which European
farmers must by law comply with.
Specifically, the EU Commission report concludes that:
- No systematic audit system for animal health has been established
either at State or Central level;
- There was no programme to monitor
the efficacy of Foot and Mouth Disease vaccination in 2007;
Report calls into question the reliability of the system to determine
that animals have been resident in a Foot and Mouth free region
for 90 days before export (an EU requirement);
- EU Inspectors discovered
that meat from an animal which was not eligible for export, had
been exported to the EU. The Report stated that some Official
Brazilian Veterinarians were not familiar with the traceability
system in place;
NFU Scotland is calling for a European ban on Brazilian beef
to be put in place at least until the problems have been fully
rectified and ongoing independent monitoring is introduced.
Nigel Miller, NFU Scotland Vice-President, said:
“NFUS has long stressed its huge concerns given the increasing
evidence that what is happening in Brazil falls well short of what
is acceptable for European consumers. This report further validates
these concerns since almost every key barrier mechanism seems to
have been breached in quite a serious way.
“The EU policy of restricting imports from certain Brazilian
regions would be acceptable if there was confidence that movement
controls or traceability rules within Brazil were adhered to or
policed but we can now see evidence that this guarantee cannot
be given. The principle of regionalisation is important but is
only robust if assurances can be given that the operation of the
system is strongly policed.
“European farmers are subject to strict traceability and
health and welfare regulations, as was evident during the recent
Foot and Mouth outbreak in Surrey. Many farmers are quite rightly
asking questions about why Brazilian beef doesn’t seem to
be subject to the same rigorous controls.
“It is time that action was taken to ensure that the high
animal welfare and excellent traceability evident in the EU is
not undermined by lower standard imports from Brazil. Exports need
to be stopped until all of the faults that were outlined by the
latest report can be rectified. Given the level of defects, I will
have no confidence in Brazilian imports unless independent monitoring
and auditing is introduced and enforced to ensure that standards
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