The Brazilian Agriculture Ministry confirmed on Monday that China had temporarily banned beef imports following a police investigation that revealed health inspectors were bribed to overlook unsanitary conditions at several plants.

Separately, Francisco Turra, head of Brazil's ABPA beef producers association, said at a Monday news conference that the scandal had put the entire sector, one of the nation's most vibrant, in a grave situation, adding that it had "destroyed" a hard-fought image of quality products.