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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs   31 July 2013  

Imported beef has veterinary control number: Minister

Indonesia:Agriculture Minister Suswono says beef imported by the State Logistics Agency (Bulog) from Australia has been certified to ensure that it comes from an area which uses safe and healthy cultivation methods.

“Bulog-procured beef has a veterinary control number to ensure that this commodity comes from an area that applies a good and healthy cultivation system. The beef is imported from companies that have been verified and have received permits from the ministry’s directorate general of animal husbandry and health,” said Suswono on Tuesday, as quoted by Antara news agency.

He made the comments in response to questions on whether the meat was halal and suspicions that the beef imported from Australia contained growth hormones that are carcinogenic.

Suswono said the imported beef was from animal slaughterhouses whose workers had halal certification.

“It's proven by a halal certificate that has been accredited by the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI). The meat importation was also supported by a health certificate issued by the Australian quarantine agency,” said Suswono.

The minister admitted that the government had yet to standardize the acceptable minimum level of trenbolone, a steroid commonly used to increase livestock muscle growth. However, he said, the ministry’s quarantine agency always monitored the hormone’s residue in livestock.

Monitoring reports show that only one of 380 samples surveyed in the period of 2011-2013 contained trenbolone in an amount that exceeded the internationally accepted level.

Earlier, the Indonesian Consumer Protection Foundation (YLKI) said the 3,000 tons of frozen meat imported by Bulog for market operations had the potential to contain carcinogenic growth hormones. According to the YLKI, the government has not yet firmly stated that the imported meat is free from the growth hormones.

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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More






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