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China says Brazilian beef exporter voluntarily suspended exports due to COVID-19 infections

23 June 2020

Brazilian beef exporter suspends shipments to China due to novel coronavirus outbreaks at meat plants.

Reuters reports that China, the world’s largest meat importer, said that Brazil’s Agra Agroindustrial De Alimentos SA had voluntarily halted beef exports to China after a virus infection among its workforce, the General Administration of Customs said on its website.

Many meat exporting nations, such as Brazil and the United States, have seen thousands of cases of COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the virus, among workers in meat plants.

China has stepped up inspections of meat imports after a new cluster of virus infections in Beijing was linked to the capital's huge Xinfadi wholesale food market.

Beijing has started testing meat, seafood and fresh produce, with some major Chinese ports opening all meat and seafood containers for virus tests.

Last week, Chinese customs asked food exporters for signed declarations that their produce was free of virus contamination.

China's meat imports in the first five months of 2020 soared 73.4 percent on the year to 3.85 million tonnes.

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