As you will be aware, there have been some incidents whereby traces of horsemeat have been found in processed meat products.

On 8th February 2013, the Food Standards Agency (FSA) issued a statement advising that given this issue is either a result of gross negligence or deliberate contamination of the food chain, it is being taken very seriously and as result, the police are now involved.

Food Standards Agency

The FSA has now launched an urgent investigation and is working closely with other Government departments, local authorities and the food industry.

As part of this investigation, the FSA has ordered some food businesses to conduct authenticity tests (in other words, check the content is listed accurately on the label) on all beef products, such as beef burgers, meatballs and lasagne, and provide the results to the FSA. The tests will be for the presence of horse meat.
Any caterers and suppliers providing meat products to public institutions such as schools and hospitals are required to have appropriate controls, including testing and sampling regimes, in place to ensure the authenticity of their products.

If caterers have any doubts about the provenance of their product, they should seek assurance from their suppliers. Any recalled products should not be used or sold.

The FSA have reconfirmed that there is no food safety risk or health issues involved here and that the contaminated batches of product have now been withdrawn from the market. For full details from the FSA, please visit the following links:

http://www.food.gov.uk/news-updates/news/2013/feb/investigation-statement

http://www.food.gov.uk/enforcement/monitoring/horse-meat/horse-meat-faq

If you are unsure about any of the products you are serving in your premises, we would recommend that you contact your supplier and ask them to confirm in writing that the meat they are selling to you is not from the sources linked with these incidents and that the authenticity of the product can be verified.

Please contact Food Alert on 020 7244 1900 or e-mail enquiries@foodalert.com if you have any enquiries

Date:

18.02.2013

Category:

Food Safety

Author:

Food Alert