China bans Brazil meat in health scare: Brasilia

Stink of Brazil meat corruption scandal puts off China and South Korea

Brazil meat sold here is safe: AVA

Brazil, the world's biggest exporter of red meat, has been hit by a beef scandal that could seriously damage the country's worldwide reputation.

JBS is the world's largest meat producer and BRF the biggest poultry exporter.

The Irish Farmers' Association (IFA) has called for an immediate ban on Brazilian meat imports following reports that the South American country may have been exporting contaminated meat products to Europe for several years.

However, Brazilian newspaper Estadão revealed shortly afterward that the restaurant serves "only European, Australian, and Uruguayan meat".

"Until it receives more information, China will not unload meat imported from Brazil", the Brazilian agriculture ministry said in a statement.

Police said among those arrested were two JBS employees and three BRF employees.

Among those companies under investigations are meat giants JBS and BRF.

Brazilian Agriculture Minister Blairo Maggi will meet foreign ambassadors on Monday to reassure them and try to prevent sanctions being issued against Brazilian meat exporters.

Ricardo Santin, ABPA's vice president of markets, said two of the suspended plants process poultry, one beef and the other horse meat.

Investigator Mauricio Moscardi Grillo said the meatpackers used chemicals to improve the appearance and smell of expired meats.

He said the reports from Brazil would indicate that basic requirements around traceability and food safety are still not being met in Brazil.

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.

Mr Temer set up the meeting with ambassadors following inquiries from the European Union and China over the scandal.

Temer ended his address by stating that of the 853,000 shipments of meat exported from Brazil previous year, only 184 were considered "noncompliant" by importers - and these referred to problems regarding the labels or certificates and never the product's quality. "If I lived in the countryside, I'd start raising my own cows and chickens!"

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