Brussels has increased an offer on poultry meat quotas to the Mercosur countries from 75,000 tonnes to 275,000 tonnes.
The new offer was made on the condition that Brazil withdraw an objection to a ruling on what constitutes processed chicken. Brazil had been paying a much-reduced levy on its frozen poultry meat by adding salt and claiming it was a processed product, which attracts much lower duties.
However, this was ruled by the EC to be a miscategorisation. Brazil - and Thailand - took the case to the World Trade Organisation. Now Brazil is being encouraged to drop the case in return for increased meat quotas.
British Poultry Council chief executive Peter Bradnock said: “Our concern is that 275,000 tonnes is a very large amount of product. In breast meat that could be the equivalent of 1.7 million tonnes carcase weight. We believe that the industry is paying too much heed to certain Mercosur interests rather than EU agriculture interests.”