HARARE, March 24 (Xinhua) -- The Zimbabwean government announced Friday that it had suspended with immediate effect importation of meat and meat products from Brazil following reports that some meat processors in the south American country were selling and exporting rotten and substandard meat.
"Following reports that some Brazilian meat processors/packers have been selling and especially exporting rotten and substandard produce for several years, the Government of Zimbabwe is suspending with immediate effect the importation of all meat and meat products from Brazil until further notice and pending the outcome of investigations in Brazil," Abigail Shonhiwa, the permanent secretary in the Zimbabwean Ministry of Industry and Commerce, said in a statement.
Shonhiwa did not elaborate on the investigations in Brazil but media reports say police in Brazil have launched raids to investigate alleged bribes paid to conceal unsanitary conditions in Brazil's meat packing facilities.
South Africa this week suspended some meat imports from Brazil citing the scandal in the south America's meat processing industry.
Zimbabwe imports some of its poultry products from neighboring South Africa and Brazil but the local industry has been complaining in recent years that the imports were hurting them.
Government in 2012 imposed a duty of 1.50 U.S. dollar per kg on imported chicken but this has failed to curb the imports that continue to flood the market. Enditem