Tester Demands Testing on Brazilian Beef, Introduces Bill to Keep Americans Safe

Senator’s bill would create a working group to determine if Brazilian beef and poultry are up to U.S. quality standards

(Big Sandy, Mont.) – Following Brazil’s request to lift the ban on beef imports to the United States, U.S. Senator Jon Tester introduced a bill that would create a working group to assess if Brazilian beef and poultry are safe to eat.

Tester’s legislation would require the Secretary of Agriculture to create a working group comprised of food safety experts and relevant trade agencies to comprehensively investigate safety threats related to Brazilian beef.

“Montana ranchers produce the best beef in the world and are held to the highest standards,” Tester said. “They know what it takes to raise safe, quality beef and we have to ensure the products we’re importing are up to our highest standards, because families shouldn’t have to worry if the meat they buy at their supermarket is safe to eat.”

Following reports in 2017 that Brazil was exporting rotten beef and attempting to cover it up with cancer-causing acid products, Tester successfully urged the USDA to implement a ban on Brazilian fresh beef imports. In recent trade negotiations, Brazil has indicated that their top priority will be to reopen fresh beef exports to the U.S.

Tester’s bill would ensure that Brazilian beef is safe to eat before it is brought back into U.S. markets by imposing a moratorium on Brazilian beef until the group has made a recommendation regarding its import status.

As the only working farmer in the U.S. Senate, Tester has worked tirelessly to ensure that food across the country is safe to eat. Following the reports that Brazilian beef was unsafe, Tester introduced legislation to ban its import and wrote a letter to the Secretary of Agriculture urging him to reinstate the ban.