Saturday, 25 March 2017
SAO PAULO: Brazil’s meat exports have fallen sharply since a police investigation into alleged bribery of food-sanitation inspectors in the world’s top beef and poultry exporter sparked a wave of trade bans, an industry group said on Friday.
Restrictions by several key importers of Brazilian meat, ranging from China to Europe, caused a 22% drop in weekly average exports of pork and poultry since news of the federal police probe broke on 17 March compared to prior weeks, the Brazilian Animal Protein Association said. The group did not provide beef export figures. Brazil’s overall meat exports generate nearly $14 billion annually, and any drop in foreign shipments could stir new headwinds for the country’s recession-hit economy.
Police have accused more than 100 people, mostly inspectors, of taking bribes in exchange for allowing the sale of rancid products, falsifying export documents or failing to inspect meatpacking plants at all. Prosecutors have yet to present charges and the police allegations have not been proven.
Meat industry officials have sought to downplay the impact of the probe, known as “Operation Weak Flesh,” saying 33 arrests made so far pointed to only isolated cases of wrongdoing.
Source by: Internet