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Cattle group probes cheap beef influx

12 January 2007

JAMAICA - The Beef and Dairy Producers Association of Jamaica (BDPAJ) is probing what it said was unusually cheap beef burger meat being imported into the island.

Balteano Duffus, general secretary of the BDPAJ, told Farmers Weekly that it was seeking more information on the imports as based on the price reflected on the invoice of the beef burger meat imported from Costa Rica and the price that is being reportedly paid by local processors for the meat, there appears to be a discrepancy between the actual price paid for the product by the importer in Costa Rica and what is reflected on the invoice submitted to the Customs Department in Jamaica.

"What the association is doing is trying to verify the authenticity of those prices," he said. "At this point, it raises concern which would lead us to investigate the matter more deeply," Mr. Duffus added. He noted that the BDPAJ has chosen this method as it did not want to make wild accusations without first obtaining the facts.

In a release issued to the media this week the BDPAJ said its members had reported that they were experiencing difficulties selling their meat on the local market due to an influx of cheap beef burger meat from Central America.

Imported beef

The general secretary of the BDPAJ was quoted in the release as saying that "Our association is unaware of, and in fact would strongly oppose the granting of any waiver or concession on duties on imported beef from any country, including Costa Rica, from where we understand that the beef burger meat in question has been imported."

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Source: Jamaica Gleaner


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