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Author Topic: Brazil Meet Imports' Health Risks slamed by EU  (Read 3288 times)
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« on: July 21, 2010, 07:08:04 AM »

Strasbourg, 20 July 2010

EU "Ombudsman: Commission reacted late to risks from Brazilian beef imports"


"The European Ombudsman, P. Nikiforos Diamandouros, has criticised the European Commission for its delay in imposing restrictions on Brazilian beef imports... in order to deal with risks from foot and mouth disease".

According to "a federation of British and Irish farm organisations", EU "Commission should have imposed a complete ban on Brazilian beef as from 2007".

"The Commission explained that deficiencies had indeed been identified in the Brazilian beef control systems in November 2007. As a consequence, it imposed stringent import restrictions on Brazilian beef",...

"The Ombudsman ....criticised the delay in restricting beef imports from unapproved farms in Brazil ....".

"Furthermore, the Ombudsman called on the Commission to continue its regular inspections outside the EU to ensure that the necessary standards of animal and public health are in fact respected"

Potential threat to animal and public health through foot and mouth disease

"Some parts of Brazil are affected by foot and mouth disease, a highly contagious viral disease affecting cattle, sheep and other animals"

On the contrary, "the EU is currently foot and mouth disease-free".

As early as since "July 2007, the federation Fairness for Farmers in Europe turned to the Ombudsman, claiming that the Commission should have imposed a complete import ban on Brazilian beef because of potential animal health threats"

"The Commission explained that serious deficiencies in the Brazilian beef control system had indeed been identified. It, therefore, proceeded to impose stringent import restrictions ....."

"The import restrictions meant that only 412 Brazilian cattle farms were deemed eligible for export to the EU, compared to around 10 000 previously".

"According to the complainant, these import restrictions were not enough. The farmers' federation alleged that, after a very critical report of the EU Food and Veterinary Office in November 2007, the Commission should have taken more stringent measures to prevent Brazilian beef from entering the EU".

"The Commission argued that ... from mid March 2008, only beef from approved farms in Brazil could be imported into the EU".

"The Ombudsman ....criticised the Commission for allowing into the EU Brazilian beef imports from 10 000 unapproved farms between February and March 2008.

Moreover, enlarging the scope also to other Third Countries, "the Ombudsman called on the Commission to continue its regular inspections outside the EU to ensure that the necessary standards of animal and public health are respected before food is imported into the EU".  ... 
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