Authorities assessing whether Brazilian rotten meat reached Denmark

Marcus Newton
March 21, 2017

The authorities have also suspended 33 government officials who are suspected of taking bribes for certifying rotten beef as good.

Three of the meat processing plants have been shut down and investigations are being conducted against 21 companies.

Earlier in the day, Bloomberg News had reported that Brazilian beef products now on the way to China would not get clearance at customs, citing a source who was notified of the decision.

The Brazilian police operation codenamed "Weak Flesh" was likely to deal a heavy blow to one of the few sectors of Latin America's largest economy that has thrived during a two-year recession.

In an unusual move on a Sunday, Temer welcomed about 20 ambassadors from among the 150 nations that import Brazilian meat to Planalto Palace in response to doubts raised after it was revealed that certain companies were adulterating spoiled meat to hide the odor, then selling it both in the local market and to foreign buyers, Efe news reported.

Food giants JBS SA and BRF SA are spending big in a rush to reassure consumers their meat is safe to eat after finding themselves at the center of Brazil's latest corruption probe.

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TODAY has reached out to AVA, other major supermarket chains as well as meat importers for comments.

The companies have strongly denied any wrongdoing. Maggi told ambassadors that the Brazilian agricultural production is an extensive chain that employs more than 6 million people in the country and that Brazil has over 4,800 meat packing plants.

BRF could prove more vulnerable to the scandal since a larger share of its operations are physically based in Brazil, while JBS derives most of its sales from overseas, according to a report by Goldman Sachs analysts led by Luca Cipiccia.

Authorities say the companies used chemicals to improve the appearance and smell of expired meats.

Chile's Agriculture Minister Carlos Furche said on Twitter the government was imposing a "temporary" suspension of meat imports from Brazil.

The catalyst for the ban has been a series of media reports since Friday which have claimed a meat industry "scandal" is unfolding in Brazil, with reports of "tainted" and "rotten" Brazilian meat being sold as a result of meat inspectors receiving bribes.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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