A shocking scandal involving horse meat in beef lasagne has erupted in Britain. The Findus brand of lasagne which is made in France was found to actually be made of horse meat. Up to 60 per cent of the meals tested by Britain’s Food Standard Agency contained mostly horse meat.
Although the thought of horse meat seems horrendous to us, the consumption of horse meat is more common in parts of Europe including France and in central Asia, China and Latin America.
Read an excerpt from Brisbanetimes.com.au that explains more:
British authorities have warned the public not to eat beef lasagne sold by the Findus brand and made in France after tests found it contained up to 100 per cent horse meat.
Findus tested 18 of its beef lasagne products manufactured by supplier Comigel in France and found 11 meals containing 60 per cent to 100 per cent horse meat, Britain’s Food Standards Agency said on Thursday.
The agency said further tests have been ordered on the lasagne for the veterinary drug phenylbutazone, as animals treated with it are not allowed to enter the food chain in Britain.
Findus withdrew the beef lasagne products after its French supplier, Comigel, raised concerns about the type of meat used in the lasagne,” the agency said in a statement.
The agency said tests on the lasagne were ordered “as part of its ongoing investigation into mislabelled meat”.
“We have no evidence to suggest that this is a food safety risk. However, the FSA has ordered Findus to test the lasagne for the veterinary drug phenylbutazone.”
The UK Food Standards Agency said the Findus branded lasagnes were tested as part of an ongoing investigation into mislabelled meat.
Although the latest horse meat incident involved lasagne, there was a similar scare 2 weeks ago involving beef burgers in Britain and Ireland. Horse meat consumption is a generally unaccepted practice in both Britain and Ireland which made this scare even more concerning. The Food Safety Authority of Ireland released results of tests they conducted about 2 weeks ago showing beef burgers that were actually made of horse and pig meat. The culprit frozen burgers were sold at Tesco and Iceland supermarkets in both Britain and Ireland and in Irish branches of Lidl, Aldi and Dunnes Stores.
While no one has taken the blame for the incident, authorities continue to carry out intensive investigations. French authorities say that frozen “beef” meals supplied to supermarkets in Britain, France, and Sweden were prepared in a Luxembourg factory owned by a French company, which bought the meat from another French supplier. That supplier, in turn, says it bought the meat from a Cypriot trader, who had subcontracted the order to a Dutch trader, who obtained the meat from a Romanian slaughterhouse. So the blame is just being passed from one to another.
But consumers don’t have need to worry too much because there isn’t much risk to public health. In the mean-time while authorities in that country are carrying out further tests they have warned consumers not to consume any Findus beef lasagne that they may have been purchased before it was removed from the shelves.