Once again, Brazil’s Ministry of Agriculture reports that outbreaks of foot and mouth disease have been confirmed in six locations in the state of Paraná. The Ministry says it has reported the situation to international animal health authorities.
The locations where the disease has been confirmed were interdicted at the end of last year when the first cases were reported. It is estimated that some 4,500 heads of cattle are in the area.
At the end of last year, isolated cases of foot and mouth disease were found in the states of Mato Grosso do Sul and Paraná. In spite of government efforts to explain the situation, a total of 56 countries maintain restrictions on imports of Brazilian meat.
Eight countries (South Africa, Chile, China, Cuba, Indonesia, Namibia, Thailand and Venezuela) do not accept meat from any state in Brazil. The rest of the countries will not accept meat from the states affected and São Paulo.
At the moment, Brazil is in talks with Russia which has prohibited imports of beef and pork from eight states. Russia imported meat from Brazil worth US$ 1.3 billion in 2005, which was 45% of all beef and pork exports by Brazil (totalling US$ 2.9 billion).
Spokespersons say the Russians should soon at least limit their embargo and accept meat from Rio Grande do Sul, Santa Catarina, Mato Grosso, Goiás and Minas Gerais.
According to the meat exporters association, Brazil now exports meat to 170 countries worth US$ 8 billion annually, or the equivalent of 6.8% of all exports.