Over the next fortnight, officials will be conducting spot checks of supermarket shelves to ensure that no beef products originating in Europe are being sold to consumers. Tatupu Airiti, secretary of health for The Cook Islands revealed that the plan is in response to fears surrounding the dangers of mad cow disease.

Many food supplies arrive in the islands from New Zealand so screening for the disease already takes place. As an extra precaution however, supermarkets have echoed the practise of neighbouring New Zealand by banning European beef products entirely.