BRAZIL – Egypt and Peru have imposed bans on Brazilian beef following the recent bovine spongiform encephalopathy revelations.
Peru has placed a temporary 180 day ban on all Brazilian beef while Egypt has specifically snubbed meat from Mato Grosso state.
This could dent beef demand as the country's premier beef area, the region in which the positive animal was farmed, caters for 25 per cent of Egyptian shipments.
This follows the recent positive result on an atypical case of BSE in a mature grass-fed taken for analysis at the World Organisation for Animal Health’s (OIE) reference laboratory at Weybridge, UK.
Laboratory findings proved the case had no links to the intake of contaminated food, the Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture stressed on Friday. The 12 year old cow was reared on an extensive grazing full-cycle beef farm with 1,177 cattle and 11 buffaloes.
The animal was sent for emergency slaughter after falling at arrival to a slaughterhouse. Tracing back animal movements to 2000, health officials found no clinical signs of the disease in the cow’s progeny.
All 49 animals were destroyed. Egypt is one of the major destinations for Brazil’s beef, averaging 100,000 tonnes shipped weight annually for the last five years.
Beef buying by Egypt recently spiked, up 91 per cent year on year for the first four months on 2014.
All control measures according to the OIE Terrestrial Animal Health Code have already been applied in order to close the outbreak, said the OIE.
The response has been quick and sufficient, according to agriculture minister Neri Geller who praised the national veterinary services for handling the case.
“Protocol was followed to by the letter, both in Brazil and abroad,” said Mr Geller. “The rapid response capability of the Brazilian veterinary service has been demonstrated, as well as our national and international ‘consumer engagement’.”
Brazilian embassies and official veterinary staff are able to provide clarifications to trading partners who query Brazil’s beef industry at this time, he added.
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