Warning on salmonella in EU meat

By Keith Nuthall

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags European union Eu Beef Poultry

The European Union’s (EU) food and feed safety rapid alert network (RASFF) has warned of a spate of problems involving salmonella contamination of imported meat and meat products. In some instances, consignments were exported from outside the EU, and others within it.

This month, for instance, it has reported the detection of salmonella in four export loads from Brazil: in frozen spiced boneless skinless turkey half breasts sent to Britain; frozen poultry meat and frozen chicken (two cargoes) to Spain; and chicken meat to Sweden. As for intra-EU trades, RASFF noted the detection of salmonella in frozen beef trimmings sent from Ireland to Sweden; in processed pork exported from the Netherlands to Belgium; and frozen hens sent from Poland to the Czech Republic.

RASFF has also reported this month some E.coli contamination in meat trades: in frozen beef exported from Brazil to Germany (which was blocked at the border); chilled deboned bovine meat from Argentina, discovered in Italy; and in frozen deer meat sent from Austria, also to Italy.

And the EU network has reported the presence of drug residues above those allowed in EU regulations in some traded meat – for instance ciprofloxacin and enrofloxacin in chilled chicken breasts, sold from Poland into Slovakia. The network also reported residue problems within Belgium’s domestic market – doxycycline in pigmeat; and levamisol in pork.

RASFF provides “food and feed control authorities with an effective tool to exchange information about measures taken responding to serious risks detected in relation to food or feed… [helping] member states… act more rapidly and in a coordinated manner…”,​ said a European Commission note.

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