Brazil suspends beef exports to China

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The measure will remain in place “until the Chinese authorities complete the evaluation of the information on the cases that has already been delivered…reports Asian Lite News

Brazil has suspended beef exports to China after confirming two cases of atypical mad cow disease in two separate domestic meat plants.

The temporary suspension that took effect on Saturday was announced by Brazil’s Department of Inspection of Products of Animal Origin (Dipoa). This ban was declared in compliance with bilateral health protocols signed between the two countries.

The measure will remain in place “until the Chinese authorities complete the evaluation of the information on the cases that has already been delivered,” said a statement, as quoted by Sputnik.

China, along with Hong Kong accounts for about 60 per cent of Brazil’s beef export shipments, according to the Beef export tracker.

Brazil’s Agriculture Ministry said the two cases were reported in the city of Belo Horizonte in the state of Minas Gerais and in Nova Canaa do Norte in the state of Mato Grosso. Moreover, Brazil officially notified the World Organization for Animal Health after the disease was confirmed.

According to the Russian news agency, the last case of atypical mad cow disease in Brazil was recorded in 2019, and exports to China were also suspended temporarily at that time.

The ministry further said these current cases are the fourth and fifth atypical mad cow disease cases recorded in the country’s 23 years of surveillance of the disease.

Last week, the city of Binzhou, in China’s Shandong province, had reported two anthrax cases, including one death.

On August 6, Binzhou reported a suspected anthrax case, and the patient died on the same day, Xinhua news agency quoted Kou Zengqiang from the Shandong Provincial Center for Disease Control and Prevention, as saying on Wednesday.

An epidemiological investigation has identified the cause of the disease as anthrax. The deceased was a 14-year-old student from Yangxin County, Binzhou. Some family members of the student were engaged in cattle raising and slaughtering, and the victim also participated in the handling of beef.

Health officials also found anthrax bacteria in environmental samples collected from the family yard and cold-storage unit. Based on the findings, the route of infection was confirmed as being contact with or eating contaminated food.

The second case, who had cut up a sick cow at the home of the first case, is undergoing medical isolation and treatment at a designated hospital. The condition of the case is stable.

Local authorities have taken disease control efforts such as disinfecting the relevant areas and items, and placing close contacts under isolation. Their isolation was lifted after they reported no abnormal symptoms.

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