Biosecurity Solomon Islands (BSI) officers (Seaport Operations) of the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAL) has confiscated and concealed meat products illegally imported into the Solomon Islands after conducting a container inspection last months (14th April 2023) at the Customs Kings warehouse at Henderson.
During their inspection the officers observed products with no visible indication of proper country of origin labelling. This has caused them to further investigate and inspect the whole consignment and found that the importer, COVEC – CR JV CO, Limited, breached the country’s Biosecurity regulations by importing the meat products without a valid import permit and documentations to import meat products into the country.
“Importing products without an authorised BSI import permit is an offence under the biosecurity laws and offenders may face heavy penalties or the courts for non-compliance,” Biosecurity officer, John Iro who involved in the operation said.
The carton of goods were concealed inside a shipping container with no visible indication of proper country of origin labelling, a manner intended to avoid detection and inspection by the biosecurity officers however, through a collective effort from the Biosecurity officers, they manage to uncover and remove the items from the container.
“All the products are from China. The illegally imported products includes, pork meat which is still under Biosecurity ban and other meat products prohibited under Biosecurity laws from importation,” Iro said.
Head of Biosecurity Solomon Islands Director, Francis Tsatsia while applauding his officers for the excellent job done said his office have been directed that a formal investigation process be carried out into the matter in order to lay charges and prosecute the offender.
Mr. Tsatsia therefore warned companies, businesses and individuals who continue to avoid or sidestep biosecurity requirements to stop and follow the right processes and requirements of the laws of Solomon Islands.
“Those who want to import meat from other countries must apply for import permit and seek advice from Biosecurity office on the legitimacy of the products or can access Biosecurity requirements from the Biosecurity website https://www.biosecurity.gov.sb/
He also assured the public and trading companies that the BSI continues to facilitate legitimate trade (import and export), and reiterates that the BSI office is capable of tracking negligence and non-compliance with biosecurity regulations.
BSI officers involved in the successful operation include; Jordan Lavia, Sisimo Rarahoa, John Iro, Nathaniel Tara, Hellen Voda and Cathy Vigimana.
The confiscated items/products are listed below.
|1ctn (5.4kg)||Dried pork sausage|
|1 plastic (3.3kg)||Dried pig Intestine|
|1 Ctn (17.3kg)||Dried Pork meat|
|4 pcs||Tin pork Luncheon Meat|
|4 Plastic (4.5kg)||Dried Chicken meat & Feet|
|1 Plastic (2.4kg)||Coated egg|
Source: MAL Media