Thu | Aug 24, 2017

Grace corned beef suppliers not under probe - Wehby

Published:Thursday | March 23, 2017 | 3:00 AMPaul Clarke
Don Wehby, chief executive officer of GraceKennedy.

Brazilian processing plants that supply corned beef to at least one of Jamaica's two major distributors of the product are not under investigation by the Brazilian authorities in the ongoing "rotten beef and poultry" probe now unfolding in the South American nation, stated Don Wehby, chief executive officer of GraceKennedy.

"We have been working non-stop over the past 48 hours to get answers in relation to this issue and can confidently state that the factories that supply corned beef to GraceKennedy Ltd are not a part of the current investigation by the Brazilian authorities," Wehby said.

"We have reviewed the information provided by Brazil's Secretariat of Animal and Plant Health (SDA) of the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Food Supply (MAPA) and are satisfied that corned beef is not among the items under scrutiny. Further, none of the meat plants listed by the Brazilian authorities supplies corned beef to GraceKennedy Ltd. The health and safety of consumers remain of primary importance to us."

 

STILL COMPLY WITH BAN

 

Wehby said that GraceKennedy would continue to comply with the Jamaican Government's temporary corned beef ban but also urged that in light of the

information now available, the Government apply the necessary resources to satisfy any concerns it might still have about corned beef imports as soon as possible.

Andrea Coy, the company's chief executive in charge of foods, said that it was important that the public understand that the recall was still in force and that the company still had the responsibility, in this instance, of abiding by the ban implemented by the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries.

"The recall is ongoing. We are continuing to remove products from the shelves. They are still quarantined, and we are still accepting returns from consumers who choose to return their products to a retailer of their choice," Coy said. "Everything as it relates to the decision to recall the product is still in place. All we are doing is informing the public about this development."

Jamaica receives 99.5 per cent of all corned beef products from Brazil. On Monday, the Government slapped a ban on the importation and sale of the product out of fear that rotten processed meat was being used in its production based on a report coming out of Brazil.

paul.clarke@gleanerjm.com