European Union officials have tightened restrictions on imports of beef from Brazil.
The move comes after EU vets visited Brazil to inspect biosecurity measures put in place following an outbreak of foot and mouth in Mato Grosso do Sul last October.
Exports of beef from parts of Brazil not affected by foot and mouth will now have to be accompanied by an animal health certificate, signed by a vet. The document will offer guarantees relating to animal contact, vaccination and surveillance.
The new measures are on top of an existing ban blocking beef imports from the three parts in Brazil where cases of foot and mouth disease have been confirmed. The ban applies to all de-boned and matured bovine meat slaughtered on and after September 30, 2005.
The delegation of vets visited Brazil to check up on animal identification and traceability programmes, and to see whether steps to restrict animal movements were sufficient to prevent the disease spreading.
MLC EU policy adviser Helene Judge said: “The delegation had concerns about the vaccination programme, disease surveillance and animal identification.”