By Loshaun Dixon
Basseterre, St. Kitts-With many countries imposing bans on importing meat from Brazil, the question remains on what will be done in St. Kitts and Nevis?
As of press time, no formal indication has been made from any official in St. Kitts and Nevis on whether there will be a ban implemented on meats from that market which the Federation has been using as a source for importing pork and other meats.
However, investigations reportedly are underway in St. Kitts and Nevis to determine if the local market had been stocked recently with any meat from Brazil.
The Observer reached out to the Permanent Secretary on the Ministry of Agriculture who directed us to speak to either the Chief Medical Officer Dr. Hazel Laws or the Chief Veterinary Officer Dr. Tracy Challenger.
Dr. Challenger told The Observer a decision had been reached in the matter and that a statement would be released shortly. However up until press time Thursday, no such information had yet been disseminated and this publication was able to confirm with a food distributor that no corn beef product had been recalled.
The Observer understands that whatever decision that had been reached would have to be passed on to the relevant Ministers for ratification.
In other parts of the Caribbean Jamaica was the first country earlier this week to announce an embargo on Brazilian corned beef following the reports. Government officials also warned people not to consume Brazilian corned beef indefinitely and announced plans to remove the product from supermarket shelves.
Quickly following Jamaica’s lead were Trinidad and Tobago where media reports indicate that the Ministry of Agriculture made requests for a recall of the possibly contaminated products and put a ban on any meats coming from Brazil.
Other Caribbean countries such as St. Lucia, Barbados and Dominica have also announced plans to ban importing meat from Brazil
CNBC reports that raids conducted last week by Brazilian federal police at several meat-producing plants and the arrest of more than two dozen people was the result of an investigation that multiple major Brazilian meat processors had been selling rotten beef and poultry.
The scandal also involves allegations that government inspectors allowed the rotten and salmonella-tainted meat products to be marketed around the world in exchange for bribes.
The Brazilian companies at the center of the investigation are JBS and BRF. Both deny any wrongdoing. The Brazilian government has since shut down those companies.