Brazil trade unrest risks further plant suspensions for Aurora

By Ashley Williams

- Last updated on GMT

Brazil's trade bans has prompted planned closures of two Aurora poultry plants
Brazil's trade bans has prompted planned closures of two Aurora poultry plants
Brazilian poultry processor Aurora has urged the Government to re-establish international trade relations or risk further plant suspensions following the planned closure of two of its plants in the Santa Catarina region.

Aurora Alimentos revealed that it would stop production at its Abelardo Luz plant from 1-30 June, which accounts for 13.4% of Aurora’s total slaughter, and would temporarily shut its Frigorifico Aurora Guatambu unit from 2-31 July, accounting for 12% of its total slaughter capacity.

Following long-running international trade disputes and recent export bans into Europe and Russia, Aurora added that further suspensions at its other plants across Brazil were possible if the government failed to re-establish international trade relations.

Collectively, 2,674 people work at the two plants, but Aurora said it did not foresee any dismissal of workers.

The measure became unavoidable due to the mishaps affecting the international market and has impacted all Brazilian poultry companies since August last year​,” Aurora said in a statement. “It is imperative to adopt in advance the temporary stoppage​.”

Many poultry sectors – owned by several Brazilian companies – were unable to export to Europe during the last two months of 2017. In the same period, Russia, a large buyer of meat products from Brazil, also suspended imports.

As a consequence of this scenario, a large part of the national production destined for export ended up remaining in the domestic market​,” the statement added. “At this stage, cold storage capacity, own and third parties’, reached its limit, making it imperative to temporarily reduce production​.”

Aurora Alimentos will evaluate and decide in July whether to suspend a third industrial plant temporarily, depending on whether the Brazilian Government succeeds in its defence of the country’s animal protein sector.

Brazil’s agriculture minister Blairo Maggi has already set out his plans to re-ignite trade relations for the country. Brazil is set to contest​ the European Union’s restrictions on poultry meat exports at the World Trade Organization, while the South American country is also aiming to build relationships with China and the US.

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