Frozen Beef Stranded at Sea After China Shuts Out Brazil’s Meat

BloombergZhang Lian has 270 tons of frozen Brazilian beef on a ship steaming toward Shanghai that he may not be able to get through customs when the vessel arrives next month.

Zhang’s Shanghai Yadongsheng Import-Export Ltd. trades $200 million of meat annually, part of the global supply chain that keeps China fed. China’s decision to halt imports of Brazil’s meat until authorities are sure it’s safe has left Zhang with some worried customers.

“It’s a bad situation,” said Zhang, an import manager at Shanghai Yadongsheng, which is called ADP Shanghai in English. “We’re telling customers who ordered those containers to be patient. We are advising new customers to avoid ordering Brazilian beef for the foreseeable future.”

Brazil is the world’s largest beef and chicken exporter, accounting for almost a fifth of global exports and its investigation into the possibility that some of that food is tainted has hit importers, shippers, food processors and customers around the world.

Zhang’s company has 10 containers of the meat on the high seas in a Hamburg Sud Group container ship that is due to arrive in Shanghai by the end of April. The meat is destined for supermarkets and restaurants, but if the situation isn’t resolved in time, it will have to be destroyed. …

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