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Poland investigates Ireland's horse-meat burger claims

PR dla Zagranicy
Nick Hodge 29.01.2013 13:52
Poland's General Veterinary Inspectorate (GIW) is investigating claims that beefburgers produced by an Irish company contained traces of horse-meat from a Polish source.
Photo: GlowimagesPhoto: Glowimages

Photo: Glowimages

“Inspections are under way which will reveal whether beef contaminated with horse-meat was exported to Ireland,” commented Jaroslaw Naze, deputy head of GIW, in an interview with the Polish Press Agency (PAP).

Naze revealed that Polish abattoirs which export beef to Ireland are located in the southern Malopolska region and the central Lodz region.

However, he stressed that horses are not known to be slaughtered at these sites.

The scandal broke a fortnight ago when horse DNA was discovered in beefburgers produced by Irish firm Silvercrest, an offshoot of the ABP Food Group.

The burgers were sold in supermarkets such as Tesco's.

An investigation under the auspices of Ireland's Ministry of Culture claimed that Poland was the source.

Speaking with Irish public broadcaster RTE Radio following a session of the EU Agriculture Ministers' Council in Brussels, Irish Minister of Agriculture Simon Coveney said that “it is an issue that we will have an ongoing discussion with Polish authorities about to find out how it happened and to make sure it does not happen again.”

Ireland's ABP Food Group has a plant in Poland, but the firm has ruled out that the horse-meat came through that factory.

Cheap sausages made from horse-meat are available in Polish butcher-shops, although the meat is marginal in comparison with pork or beef.

“From what we know, there is no danger to life or health,” Naze assured, commenting on the Irish beefburger fiasco. (nh)

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