JBS attacks 'unfounded' Greenpeace report

Brazilian meat giant JBS has threatened legal action against Greenpeace after the environmental organisation published a report accusing JBS of collaborating in deforestation by failing to prevent cattle from illegally deforested land from entering the supply chain.

In an unequivocal statement by the company, JBS said that it was taken by surprise about the report, which it described as defamatory, frivolous and unfounded. It said that such impartial attacks did not enhance discussions of sustainability on the beef supply in Brazil.

JBS South America CEO, Jose Augusto de Carvalho Junior, said he would challenge the report and use “all available legal channels to repair the material damage caused to the image of the Company through the disclosure of this incorrect information.”

He said: “The information regarding JBS in the report is false, misleading, incorrect and induces the public to draw erroneous conclusions regarding the reality of the facts.”

A statement from the company defended its activities to promote sustainability and countered some of the specific charges outlined in the Greenpeace report. It said that there were factual inaccuracies with Greenpeace’s claims that JBS was using suppliers embargoed by the Brazilian Environmental Institute (IBAMA) as well as from ranches in indigenous reservations or from property whose employees were in conditions akin to slavery. It stated that transaction were blocked when properties were embargoed by the IBAMA or when JBS had received “unquestionable proof” that ranches were located within indigenous reservations.

In countering the accusation that it did not monitor indirect livestock suppliers, JBS said that this would only be possible “when there is a complete traceability system in Brazil which would identify and monitor cattle from calving to [adulthood]”.

However, the company said that it would continue to cooperate with public bodies, NGOs and research institutes to incentivise and develop a feasible traceability system, applicable to the whole cattle supply chain in Brazil.


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