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(NAR) VOL. 12 NO. 2 / JANUARY - MARCH 2001

[ BFAD BUREAU CIRCULAR NO. 02, s. 2001, March 08, 2001 ]


A temporary ban on the importation of live animals (i.e., cattle, sheep and goat) and their meat products and other feed ingredients derived from said animals from European countries was ordered by the Department of Agriculture (DA) in the light of the increase in cases of Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) or “mad cow disease” in Europe through Memorandum Order No. 19, s. 2000 dated 29 November 2000.  The ban has been implemented since December 2000.

The Bureau of Food and Drugs is monitoring the entry of processed meat products from Europe and based on the import data obtained from the Bureau of Customs, the processed meat products that have been imported from Europe for the Year 2000 included the following: corned beef, liver paste, luncheon meat, chopped ham, danish ham, lamb curry, pasta with meat and other products simply identified as canned meat.

All Supermarkets, Duty Free Shops and other retail outlets are hereby advised to voluntarily withdraw from their shelves all processed meat products from Europe if these contain meat/offals from cattle, sheep and goat.  The ingredient declaration on product labels should be examined for the presence of beef, beef liver, and other substances derived from said animals.  Canned meat and other meat products with only pork or poultry as ingredients are not included in this recall advisory.

While the abovementioned meat products may not be confirmed to contain specified risk materials from BSE contaminated animals, the Department of Health is recommending their recall from retail outlets as a precautionary measure to ensure that the risk of exposure to BSE by consumption of European meat products are minimized.  A copy of the Bureau Circular to Importers from European countries is attached for you information and guidance on the processed meat products that are not permitted for importation and sale.

Owners/Managers of all supermarkets, duty free shops and retail outlets are expected to prepare an inventory of withdrawn meat products to be submitted to BFAD as soon as possible and to identify the respective suppliers of said products, indicating their contact business address and telephone/fax numbers.  The withdrawn products shall be kept in the possession of the respective supermarkets, duty free shops and retail outlets, for verification and appropriate instructions for disposal.  The same should not be transferred to any other location for storage without prior written notice from the concerned retailer and approval by BFAD.

All are enjoined to cooperate in the interest of protecting human and animal health from BSE.

Adopted: 8 March 2001

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