(photo credit: JPOST STAFF)
DUBAI - Saudi Arabia has stopped beef and poultry imports from four Brazilian companies over concerns about food safety after accusations that individuals had been bribed to allow sales of rotten and salmonella-tainted meats.
Following a two-year investigation of Brazil's meatpacking industry, police have accused more than 100 people, mostly health inspectors, of taking bribes for allowing the sale of rancid products, falsifying export documents or failing to inspect meatpacking plants.
"This measure was taken in the interest of citizens' and residents' safety," a statement from the Saudi Food and Drug Authority, carried by Saudi Arabia's official news agency SPA late on Wednesday, said of the halt to imports.
It listed the affected companies as JJZ Alimentos SA, Frango Dm Industria e Comercio de Alimentos Ltda, Seara Alimentos, a subsidiary of JBS, the world's biggest meatpacking company, and BRF SA, the world's biggest poultry exporter.