Brazilian firm JBS, the world’s biggest meat processing company, was on Monday again accused of “laundering” cattle from ranches blacklisted for destroying the Amazon rainforest.
The charge, leveled in a report by an investigative journalism consortium, marks at least the fifth time in just more than a year that the company, which exports around the world, has been accused of cattle laundering.
That is a practice in which animals from a blacklisted ranch are transferred to one with a clean record to dodge a ban on sales.
The London-based Bureau of Investigative Journalism, UK newspaper the Guardian and Brazilian journalism group Reporter Brasil said in the joint report that pictures posted on Facebook by a JBS truck driver appeared to show him and his colleagues transporting cattle from a blacklisted ranch, Estrela do Aripuana, to a “clean” one 300km away, Estrela do Sangue, in July last year.
The drivers wore JBS uniforms and drove JBS trucks in the pictures.
Estrela do Aripuana, based in Mato Grosso, which is largely covered in Amazon rainforest, was in 2012 blacklisted by the Brazilian Ministry of the Environment over the illegal deforestation of about 1,500 hectares of land. Authorities also fined its owner 2.2 million reals (about US$1 million at the time).
The consortium said it had obtained Brazilian government records indicating that at least 7,000 animals were shipped from the embargoed ranch to the “clean” one between June 2018 and August last year.
Other documents show the latter sold 7,000 animals to JBS slaughterhouses from November 2018 to November last year, it said.
JBS denies cattle laundering and says it is implementing measures to prevent third parties from sneaking such animals into its supply chain.
“We have adopted an unequivocal stance of zero deforestation,” it said in a statement, adding that it had opened an internal investigation into the latest allegations.
Brazil faces mounting pressure to slow surging deforestation after massive fires devastated the Amazon last year — often set to clear land for ranching and farming.
Several European countries have threatened to scupper a trade deal between the EU and the Mercosur trade bloc, of which Brazil is a member, over the issue.
Global investment firms managing close to US$4 trillion in assets last month wrote an open letter to Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro urging him to change government policies blamed for accelerating the destruction.
FRENCH AID: Paris has sent a navy ship and aircraft from Reunion Island with some pollution control equipment, but rough seas are spreading the oil spill The operator of a Japanese bulk carrier which ran aground off Mauritius in the Indian Ocean yesterday apologized for a major oil spill, which officials and environmentalists say is creating an ecological disaster, as police prepared to board the ship. The MV Wakashio, operated by Mitsui OSK Lines, struck the reef on Mauritius’ southeast coast on July 25. “We apologize profusely and deeply for the great trouble we have caused,” Mitsui OSK Lines executive vice president Akihiko Ono said at a news conference in Tokyo. The company would “do everything in their power to resolve the issue,” he said. At least 1,000 tonnes of
Three Micronesian sailors stranded on a remote Pacific island have been found alive and well after a rescue team spotted their giant SOS message written into the sand on a beach. Australian and US military aircraft found the three men on tiny Pikelot island, nearly 200km west of where they had set off. Rescuers said that the men were “in good condition” with no significant injuries. The men had been missing for three days after their 7m skiff ran out of fuel and strayed off course. Authorities in the US territory of Guam raised the alarm on Saturday after the men failed to complete
A cat that went missing on a family holiday on the shores of Loch Lomond, Scotland, has been identified 12 years later. Tortoiseshell-and-white Georgie spent October half term in 2008 with her owners at the Rowardennan campsite, but vanished as they were due to return home to Greater Manchester, England. After a search of the site the Davies family departed without Georgie, hoping the three-year-old microchipped feline would be located by someone. Over the intervening 12 years, she remained close to the Queen Elizabeth Forest Park site, being fed and cared for by campsite staff and holidaymakers. After the COVID-19 pandemic hit and lockdown
LIFELONG LOSS: Jiro Hamasumi, who was not quite born when an atomic bomb hit Hiroshima, lost his father and other relatives, but said he thinks about his father daily As Japan marks 75 years since the devastating attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the last generation of nuclear bomb survivors is working to ensure their message lives on after them. The “hibakusha” — literally “person affected by the bomb” — have for decades been a powerful voice calling for the abolition of nuclear weapons. There are an estimated 136,700 left, many of whom were infants or soon to be born at the time of the attacks. The average age of a survivor now is a little over 83, according to the Japanese Ministry of Health, lending an urgency as they share their testimonies