Philippines bans chicken imports from Brazil on coronavirus scare

Philippines bans chicken imports from Brazil on coronavirus scare

Reuters  | Aug 14, 2020 18:50

Philippines bans chicken imports from Brazil on coronavirus scare

MANILA, Aug 14 (Reuters) - The Philippines imposed a
temporary ban on poultry meat imports from Brazil on Friday
after two cities in China found traces of the new coronavirus in
cargoes of imported frozen food, including chicken wings from
the South American country.
Shenzhen city authorities identified the chicken as
originating from a plant owned by Aurora, Brazil's third-largest
poultry and pork exporter. Brazil has the world's second-worst COVID-19 outbreak after
the United States, recording more than 3.2 million cases and
more than 105,000 deaths since the pandemic began.
"With the recent reports from China and in compliance with
the country's Food Safety Act to regulate food business
operators and safeguard Filipino consumers, the temporary ban on
the import of chicken meat is imposed," the Department of
Agriculture said in a statement.
It did not say how long the ban would be enforced. Brazil
accounts for around 20% of the Philippines' poultry meat
imports.
Aurora, which is unlisted, said it had not been formally
notified by the Chinese authorities of the alleged
contamination. The company said it takes all possible measures
to prevent the spread of the coronavirus and there is no
evidence it is spread through food. Brazil's agriculture
ministry said it was seeking clarification from Chinese
authorities.
The Philippines' Department of Agriculture assured the
public, however, that chicken products currently in the local
market were safe to eat.
The World Health Organization said on Thursday it saw no
evidence of coronavirus being spread by food or packaging and
urged people not to be afraid of the virus entering the food
chain.

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