ShapeShapeauthorShapechevroncrossShapeShapeShapeGrouphamburgerhomeGroupmagnifyShapeShapeShaperssShape

China suspends imports from two additional meat plants in Brazil amid coronavirus fears

China has halted imports from two pork plants in Brazil as it cracks down on meat shipments amid renewed fears over COVID-19.

6 July 2020, at 11:08am

Reuters reports that the pork plants are owned by meatpackers JBS SA and BRF SA.

According to a post on 4 July on China’s Customs website, China is temporarily suspending imports from BRF’s plant in Lajeado and JBS-owned Seara brand in Tres Passos, both in Brazil’s Rio Grande do Sul state.

The posting, which only identified the plants by registration numbers, gives no reason for the suspension. But Brazil is reeling from the second worst COVID-19 outbreak in the world behind the United States.

China is the largest buyer of Brazilian pork, beef and chicken. It has requested that meat exporters globally certify their products are coronavirus free, which BRF, JBS and other Brazilian meatpackers have already done.

A total of six Brazil meat plants have now been blocked from exporting to China amid rising concerns over thousands of cases of COVID-19, the disease caused by coronavirus, among slaughterhouse workers in the country.

BRF said it was not given a reason for the suspension, which it only discovered via the GACC website. But the company said it was already working with Brazilian and Chinese authorities to re-establish exports from the facility as quickly as possible.

JBS said in a statement it would not comment on the decision. It was taking various measures to ensure its food is of the highest quality and that its workers are protected, JBS said.

Brazil's Agriculture Ministry said it would only comment after it received an official communication from China on the matter, which it has not received.

Read more about this story here.