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Ferris says EU Vet Report confirms need for ban on Brazilian Beef

8 November, 2007

The Sinn Féin Agriculture Spokesperson Martin Ferris TD has said that the report on Brazilian beef issued by the EU Food and Veterinary Office yesterday confirms the need to impose a ban on beef imports from that country. The report found serious irregularities regarding animal registration, identification, vaccination, false certification of exports, breaches of EU residency requirements and that Foot and Mouth Disease is still present.

Speaking in the Dáil today Deputy Ferris said, "This report confirms that serious irregularities and shortcomings exist and confirm the allegations that have been made by farmers groups here in regard to the import of beef from Brazil. These imports pose a huge threat both to the health of consumers and the ability of EU producers to compete with cheap imports.

"The report further strengthens the case for an EU wide ban to be imposed on Brazilian imports and the need for the Irish Government to change its stance on this issue and to argue for such a ban in the interests of Irish farmers and consumers.

"This is all the more necessary in the light of today's revelation that Foot and Mouth Disease has been confirmed in Health Commissioner Kyprianou's own country Cyprus. It appears that the strain found is the same as that discovered in Britain and that is prevalent in the Mato Grosso region of Brazil. That raises huge questions over the origin of this strain and underlines the need for this country to be extremely careful in opening itself to imports from countries that do not have the same high standards of animal health and consumer safety." ENDS

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