The suspicion of a possible mad cow case identified in the Brazilian state of Minas Gerais has further paralyzed activity in the country's abattoirs, and consequently the price of live cattle. A release from the Association of Brazilian abattoirs in the representation of the industry confirmed the situation.
The news of a mad cow case comes at a moment in which abattoirs are working with idle capacity to supply the domestic market and has further diminished the business of purchasing live cattle, said Abrafrigo.
According to the industry the main concern is for those plants that export, mainly to China because there is a serious chance of a suspension of sales abroad this season.
”All this has created a standoff from the meat packing plants which are naturally going to stop their activities on the national holiday of 7 September (Brazilian independence), while waiting for the outcome of the case later in the week, added Abrafrigo.
As a consequence of the situation and the abattoirs release, the price of live cattle, which was already considered too high, has gradually fallen in recent days.
Minas Gearis governor Romeu Zema confirmed that the alleged mad cow case was under scientific investigation.
Governor Zema said that the state's agriculture office was working with Brazil's ministry of Agriculture and that all measures have been taken to ensure there is no contagion, although admitting that there is no certainty of other possible cases. Anyhow all protocol measures have been taken, particularly since Minas Gerais and Brazil much depend of the export of animal proteins.
But apparently it was not certain whether the state's authorities where the suspicious case was reported had taken the necessary measures, with the demanded speed, to isolate the farm and its livestock.
From Brasilia the Agriculture ministry which has the Minas Geraios suspicious case under investigation pointed out that Brazil as a member of OIE, the Animal Health Organization has adopted the vigilance, investigation and notification processes recommended by the Paris based institution”, and once the tests have concluded will have them announced.