China suspends pork imports from German plant after coronavirus cases

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BEIJING, June 18 (Reuters) – China has suspended pork imports from a plant owned by German meat producer Toennies, a customs document showed on Thursday, a day after the company reported a coronavirus outbreak among workers at the site.

Toennies said on Wednesday it had stopped slaughtering at one of its plants after around 400 workers tested positive for the virus.

China’s General Administration of Customs updated a list of approved meat exporters on Thursday to say the Toennies plant in Rheda Wiedenbrück was suspended.

Toennies was not available for immediate comment.

China this week strengthened inspections of imported meat, after a new cluster of coronavirus infections was linked to Beijing’s huge Xinfadi wholesale food market.

The suspension of imports from the German plant could pose a risk to other exporters, including major suppliers to China like the United States and Brazil where scores of plants have had coronavirus outbreaks among workers.

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