BRF, which claims to be one of the world’s largest meat companies, said its plant in Mineiros, in the centre-western state of Goiás, has restarted slaughter operations.
In a statement to the market, BRF said it had received clearance from the Ministry of Agriculture Livestock and Supply to resume all work at the plant.
The government tested samples of chicken from the Mineiros plant and found evidence that poultry had been pumped full of excess water, in a likely move to increase the weight, and thus the price, of the poultry. The government called this an “economic problem”.
BRF backs food safety standards
In response, BRF said that it would like to “reiterate its confidence in its processes and standards”.
The factory in Mineiros reopened on 10 April and began processing livestock the following day, after a thorough inspection of its production line. The plant has the capacity to slaughter 26,000 turkeys and 115,000 chickens per day.
After Brazil was rocked by a rotten meat scandal that saw more than 1,000 police raid meat plants across six states, Brazil’s government closed three factories and placed 21 under audit.
An analysis of 302 samples taken from the 21 meat plants found that only 2% of them were unfit for public consumption. Of the eight samples that were deemed a health risk, seven were contaminated with salmonella and one had traces of staphylococci.
The seven traces of salmonella were detected in hamburgers produced by Novilho Nobre. The government has now closed the company’s hamburger production line.
To restore global trust in the safety of Brazilian meat, the government is set to visit Iran, Egypt and Algeria this month. Diplomatic trips to China, Hong Kong, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and the European Union will take place in May.