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Ostrich Meat Loses EU Status

by 5m Editor
19 November 2007, at 10:55am

JOHANNESBURG - The EU health and consumer protection directorate has recommended that South Africa be removed from the EU's list of exporters of ostrich meat, poultry, milk, honey, pork and beef, after failing to provide an approved residue monitoring plan. The recommendation - which could lead to an outright ban - was made in June.

Although South Africa is still sending meat - except beef - to the EU, the R1.2 billion ostrich export business - the largest local meat export to the EU - is under threat.

EU spokesperson Philip Tod has confirmed the delisting recommendation, adding that the move came after an EU delegation of health inspectors had declared the country's residue control systems ineffective and dysfunctional. The inspectors also noted lack of local staff to monitor the control systems.

Residue testing in meat involves an examination for antimicrobials and antibiotics such as penicillin, pesticides and growth stimulants that could harm consumers.

A final ruling on whether to completely ban South Africa or reinstate it to the list of EU meat providers would be taken at the end of next month, Tod said. "A decision to continue accepting South Africa's main meat export [will] depend on guarantees and information provided by the local authorities."

Source: BusinessReport

5m Editor