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Mercosur deal gives access for 180,000 tons of chicken from South America

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Brazilian ABPA celebrates the deal, while European producers fear the worst and ask for special support from national governments.

Posted on Jul 02 ,08:29

Mercosur deal gives access for 180,000 tons of chicken from South America

The Brazilian Association of Animal Proteins (ABPA) celebrated in a note the announcement of the agreement signed between Mercosur and the European Union, as Brazil is going to benefit most from the deal in poultry and pork exports.
According to ABPA officials involved in the negotiations, chicken meat quota of exports is set at "180 thousand tons in the cycle of 12 months".

"The agreed volume is significant enough for Brazil to maintain its position as a partner for European food security, "said ABPA Executive Director Ricardo Santin, who participated in the mission in Brussels.

The agreement, according to the institution, also makes it viable to sell pork and processed eggs to the EU. "The agreement will score fairer and more transparent criteria in the business between the two blocs," said ABPA President Francisco Turra. Brazil is one of the largest producers of poultry, beef and pork but in the last couple of years, the meat industry in the country was shaken by several scandals involving poor quality of meat and corruption. Last year, poultry products coming from 20 Brazilian processing plants were banned in the EU.
Anyway, despite the optimism manifested by the EU officials, producers in several European countries didn't receive well the news.
Polish National Poultry Council and the Beef Sector Board from the same country have warned that the trade agreement could have catastrophic consequences if Europe will face a flood of cheap and uncertain quality of meat from Brazil and Argentina.
"The main beneficiary of this agreement will be Brazil, which is the world's largest exporter of poultry meat - it sells nearly 500,000 tons per year to the European Union itself. This is despite the fact that the controls carried out in 2013, 2017 and 2018 by the EC revealed a number of serious non-compliance of the Brazilian food production system with EU regulations, not to mention the famous 'Tainted Meat' scandal in 2017, which resulted in deletion from the list Brazilian suppliers to the EU market of up to 20 plants there", declared Lukasz Dominiak, CEO of KRD-IG, in an interview for Portal Spozywczy magazine.
The same alert was triggered among beef producers in Spain, according to Agronegocios website. "Beef, a sector with a wide presence in areas of our territory with great environmental value, already supports Mercosur imports, which account for 80% of the beef coming into the EU and any additional concession will introduce strong imbalances in this market at a time when we will also have to face the Brexit", said a joint statement of agricultural organizations in Spain such as ASAJA, COAG, UPA and Agroalimentary Cooperatives of Spain, who are also asking for governmental support in the area to protect the local industry.

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