DOHA: A certificate from an authorised laboratory is now mandatory for all meat and meat products imported into Qatar from European countries to ensure that they are not adulterated.
The decision follows a scandal involving leading food companies in Europe, after horsemeat was found in some of their beef products.
The Joint Food Monitoring Committee at the Supreme Council of Health (SCH) said yesterday that a decision had been taken to make a quality certificate mandatory for all meat imported from European countries. An authorised laboratory in the source country should certify that the meat/ meat product is not mixed with other products.
A senior official of the committee recently disclosed that the panel was studying a proposal to make a quality certificate mandatory for meat imported not only from Europe but also other countries.
The committee said in a statement that it had intensified monitoring of meat products imported from Europe.
Qatar had imposed a ban on import of beef from Europe following an outbreak of mad cow disease, but three countries were exempted from the ban later.
Most of the meat and meat products in the local market are sourced from GCC and Arab countries, besides the United States, said the committee.
“Investigations are going on (at) the regional and international levels to identify the companies involved in the scandal, and the issue will be dealt (with) accordingly once they are finalised,” it added.