Chile's Agriculture and Livestock Service (SAG) will send at least two representatives to Japan this weekend to clarify any questions the Asian government may have regarding the recent red meat exported to the island nation and stamped with false sanitation seals.
Because the Japanese market is considered one of the most attractive for the Chilean meat industry, SAG has taken swift measures to assure the Japanese Health Ministry of the safety of Chilean meat products, including suspending all exports to Japan from processing plants that do not have a full-time health inspection officer. The red meat seals are this year's second fraudulent labeling case with Chilean agricultural products destined for Japan. False SAG labels were found recently on 46,000 kilograms of grape juice headed to Japan from Chile's bulk wine export giant Empresas Lourdes. The company conducted a quick internal investigation and fired the people responsible for the fraud. Lourdes is now considering legal action against them. This week the government of Chile is expected to respond to an official inquiry from Japan's Health Ministry requesting detailed information on the process of agricultural certification in an effort to understand Chile's agricultural export system. The Santiago Times
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