Do we really know what is in our food?
Well in the case of beefburgers, ready made cottage pies, beef curry's and lasagne you could be eating up to 29% horse meat .
There is now a major recall of some of these products in Ireland and the UK and Tesco shares have dropped 300.000000 pounds in one day.
The problem was first discovered back in Oct 2012 when the FSAI did DNA testing at factory level , when the first results came back the FSAI informed their counterparts in the UK that both equine and porcine DNA had been found in some of these products, further independent samples were taken which again showed that these 'beef ' products contained other animals DNA and this has led to the recall.
We have been assured that there is no safety risk, this is a food labelling problem, but the bulking agents (pink slime) from where this contamination came from was not labelled horse/ pig, it was labelled beef.
Under EU regulations all additives must be listed. So how did this all come about?
Once again we have to look to the supermarkets, they sell cheap food, this they tell us is because the consumers want cheap food, is this really the case? They are there to make big profits for their shareholders, (I guess Tesco shareholders are not too impressed at the moment) they contract the manufacture of processed food to food processing plants who have to give a consistent product, at the price dictated by the supermarkets even if this means sourcing from different countries.
We now know that this meat protein was imported from Spain and Holland, as they are both EU states and therefore have to comply with the regulations regarding labelling, something seems to have gone very wrong with their system traceability and inspection.
Meanwhile, back in Ireland the public are blaming our government although I cant follow this reasoning.
Both Ireland and the UK are major beef producers, in Ireland it is the main export commodity, we could well lose this export market due to other EU states bad practicice.
Tesco is not the only big name to be involved with this scandal, Asda, Lidl, Dunns , Iceland and Aldi amongst others.
Supermarkets have a lot to answer for, lowering of farming standards, demanding lower prices from their suppliers, and destroying the life and soul of small towns.
We live four miles from our local town, population 3000, this would be from a catchment area of about eight miles radius, at one time our little town had four butchers, now down to two, five shoes shops, still here, four pharmacy's still here, three veg shops down to one, at least one fresh fish shop, none now, several bakery's, down to one, and numerous grocery shops, which would have been at the heart of the town where people would meet and absences would have been noted and enquiries made. We still have one small grocery store and in spite of it being next door to Lidl it is still a very busy little shop and often cheaper than Lidl or Supervalue, our other large supermarket.