March 24, 2017 saw the temporary suspension of import permits for corned beef from Brazil by the local agricultural health authorities. This decision was made following reports of some twenty one plants in Brazil found to be packaging and processing meats unfit for human consumption. Love News got an update from the CEO in the Ministry of Agriculture for an update on where we are on the matter.
“I know some samples have been taken, the product has been quarantined and samples have been taken and the initial set of results that have been seen have come back negative but I do believe that BAHA and the Ministry of Health will wait for the full sampling to be completed before they decided on the next course of action but we are doing all of this to safeguard the Belizean public to ensure that they are consuming a product that is safe.”
CEO Alpuche says the quarantine remains in effect.
“As a precautionary measure many countries including Belize decided to stop the importation or to cease the importation of meat products from Brazil. In our case we don’t do fresh imports from Brazil but corned beef was one of the obvious ones and so that is why I said in the interest of all consumers the decision was taken to quarantine what was coming in and to test it. It’s a quarantine until the full test results of the sampling that was done is available I think the product will remain in quarantine and BAHA and the public health department will have to review the results and then decide whether or not to lift the quarantine.”
Belize does import corned beef from Brazil however it is important to note that none of the imported corn beef came from any of the 21 facilities under scrutiny.