BRASILIA (REUTERS) - Gisele Bundchen is not showing model behaviour, fumed the Brazilian agriculture minister who called her out as a "bad Brazilian".
Ms Tereza Cristina Dias slammed the supermodel on a radio programme on Monday (Jan 14) for "saying bad things about Brazil without knowledge of the facts" and calling the country a deforester.
Ms Dias said Bundchen should instead be highlighting achievements in preservation.
Her outburst prompted the Brazilian supermodel to tweet on Wednesday (Jan 16) that she had been involved in environmental causes since 2006.
She was always looking for more knowledge through "reading and contact with scientists, researchers, farmers, cooperative and environmental organisations".
She argued that despite the existence of preserved areas, deforestation in the Amazon rainforest is on the rise.
Bundchen said the illegal deforesters are the real bad Brazilians.
The Amazon, the world's largest tropical rainforest, absorbs vast amounts of greenhouse gas and its preservation is seen as vital to the fight against climate change.
"I see the preservation of nature not only as a legal environmental duty, but also a way to ensure water, biodiversity and climate conditions essential for agricultural production," Bundchen wrote.