USDA allows beef exports to Brazil

USDA allows beef exports to Brazil
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American producers will once against be able to trade beef with Brazil.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture said it has reached an agreement with the Brazil Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Food Supply to allow U.S. beef and beef products to be sold in the Brazilian market for the first time since 2003.

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“The Brazilian market offers excellent long-term potential for U.S. beef exporters. The United States looks forward to providing Brazil’s 200-million-plus consumers, and growing middle class, with high-quality American beef and beef products,” Agriculture Secretary Tom VilsackThomas James VilsackUSDA: Farm-to-school programs help schools serve healthier meals OVERNIGHT MONEY: House poised to pass debt-ceiling bill MORE said in a statement.

In a separate decision this week, the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) said fresh chilled or frozen beef could be safely imported from Brazil. The agency said the country’s food safety system has equivalent standards to its U.S. counterpart.

The USDA said both countries will immediately begin updating their administrative procedures in order to allow trade to resume. U.S. companies will need to complete Brazil’s regular facilities registration process.

The decision to once again begin trading beef with Brazil came as a disappointment for the U.S. Cattlemen’s Association.

“The safety of the U.S. domestic herd remains at stake given Brazil’s ongoing Foot-and-mouth disease problem and continued bad-acts within the international trade community,” the group said in a statement. “Unfortunately, given the lack of prescriptive labeling now available in the U.S., consumers will also be impacted by today’s announcement.”