Following several reports from the Government of Brazil, as well as the international media, regarding the sale of unwholesome meats and meat products from Brazil, the Ministry of Health and Social Security can confirm the following:
- The Government of Brazil has launched an investigation (named Operation Weak Flesh), relating to the sale of unwholesome meat and meat products produced in Brazil
- The operations of three meat establishments in Brazil have been suspended and another 21 such establishments were placed under a special inspection regime conducted by an assigned task force of the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Food Supply in Brazil
- Out of 4,837 meat establishments subject to Brazilian federal inspections, 21 are allegedly involved in irregularities
- The investigation included a review of the actions of personnel who were employed to conduct inspection of meat and meat products in Brazil
It is further noted that since the commencement of the investigation by the Brazillian Authorities, several countries, including territories of the European Union, China, Chile and Jamaica, have instituted measures to restrict the importation of meat and poultry products from Brazil.
In light of the above, a meeting was convened on Wednesday, 22 March 2017, among Grenada’s national agencies responsible for food safety, including the Veterinary and Livestock Division of the Ministry of Agriculture, the Bureau of Standards and the Environmental Health Division of the Ministry of Health.
Arising out of that meeting, the following decisions and actions were taken:
- Importers and retailers are advised to remove for sale all processed meat products originating from Brazil until further notice
- Increased surveillance of establishments that trade in corned beef and other processed meats products locally
- Continued networking with regional and sub-regional partner agencies in developing a common position in further response to this matter
The Ministry of Health, as well as the other local agencies, will continue to work with the Brazilian Authorities with a view to ensuring that this matter is resolved satisfactorily in the interest of health and public safety.
In the meantime the Ministry of Health advises consumers to REFRAIN from the consumption of corned beef and processed meat products from Brazil until further notice.