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Brazilian government orders meat recall

26 March 2017

Brazilian investigators allege that some managers bribed health inspectors and politicians to get government certificates for their products.

Egypt's Ministry of Agriculture and Land Reclamation announced on Saturday the resumption of imports of meat and poultry products from Brazil.

China is a major importer of Brazilian meat.

The corruption scandal has hurt Brazil's reputation as the world's largest meat exporter, with sales of nearly $14 billion a year ago.

Brazilian meat imports have already started being cleared in Shanghai, one of the sources said.

The government has tried to downplay the extent of the corruption, saying that only a handful of 4,000 plants were involved.

"Brazil ranks among the biggest animal protein exporters in the world, and the standards of excellence of our products rate among the best of the world".

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The labor force was also up for the month at 416,384, an increase of 1.6 percent from when it totaled 409,691 a year before. The report shows that about 500 more people were employed in the county in February than the same month a year ago .

Meanwhile, Tsui Wah Restaurant, which has 32 branches featuring Hong Kong's cha chaan teng dishes, took all dishes containing Brazilian meats off the menu.

"We asked the Brazilians to suspend all exports but they refused", said the diplomat, who asked not to be named because of the sensitivity of the matter.

Brazil's JBS S.A., the world's biggest meat processor, said on Thursday it suspended beef production at 33 of its 36 plants in Brazil for three days because of the lack of sales.

China is the second-largest importer of Brazilian beef, after Hong Kong, with more than $703 million in imports in 2016.

According to the ministry of agriculture, China's ban on Brazilian products will be suspended on Monday, with the exception of meat processed in 21 plants still under investigation by Brazilian authorities.

President Michel Temer welcomed China's ruling and described it in a statement as recognition of Brazil's agricultural-defense system. Fifty-seven Brazilian meat-processing plants will be able to send their goods to China as they did before March 19, when Chinese customs stopped accepting all Brazilian meat imports for inspection, in accordance with a government order. He told a congressional hearing the scandal could cost the meatpackers $1.5 billion or 10 percent of annual meat exports. The main concern and commitment is to ensure the safety and quality of the products.

Brazilian government orders meat recall