By Ridwan Max Sijabat
THE JAKARTA POST
JAKARTA, INDONESIA - The Tanjung Priok Port Authority has seized 167 containers of animal feed, which arrived at the port from Spain last week.
Contaminated feed is widely believed to have started the mad cow epidemic.
Cerah Bangun, chief investigator at the Tanjung Priok tax and excise office, said Wednesday the containers, which arrived aboard three vessels, would not be unloaded until a full investigation had been carried out.
"We can't explain further because the investigation is still going on," he said, adding that the three vessels were MSC Paris, MSC Valencia and MSC Giovanna.
He could say the 167 containers of poultry feed contained animal parts, but not whether they were from sick cows. "Samples have been sent to the laboratory for further testing and the feed will be rejected if it is found to have been made with the remains of sick cows," he said.
Cerah said the government had banned the import of meat from Europe because of the spread of mad cow disease in Europe and the United States.
Previously, Agriculture Minister Anton Apriantono said the government would continue prohibiting the import of feed containing animal parts from European countries.
The director of public health and veterinary affairs at the Agriculture Ministry, Turni Rusli Syamsuddin, said the government would remain selective about giving entry to foreign meat products, particularly from Europe, the United States, Australia and New Zealand.