BMPA ‘sets record straight’ on DNA testing reports
The British Meat Processors Association (BMPA) has spoken out on behalf of industry following media reports focused on DNA testing results.
A freedom of information request to the Food Standards Authority (FSA) has revealed that products from 22 meat processing companies have been found to contain ingredients other than those stated on the label.
BMPA states that, to put this into context, those companies represent less than 0.25% of the more than 10,000 meat processing and manufacturing companies in the UK.
What is very encouraging, according to BMPA, is that the detection and enforcement processes that are in place to protect consumers from this kind of fraudulent activity are working.
The association states that in most industries and professions, there is a minority of “unscrupulous operators that try to circumvent the system for their own gain”. From accountancy and banking through to construction and healthcare, it could be argued no industry is immune to this.
Nick Allen, BMPA chief executive, added: “Unfortunately, there are a small number rogue operators in the industry that seek to profit from deliberately substituting cheaper ingredients in their products. Often this kind of business will actively avoid involvement with organisations like BMPA and the food industry regulators.
“Any businesses that have slipped in their standards, for whatever reason, should be working with organisations like BMPA, the Food Standards Agency and Red Tractor to let us help them achieve and maintain full compliance. Any businesses that break the rule and try to dupe consumers can expect to be found out and brought to justice through the system of targeted, intelligence-led inspections and enforcement actions.”
He added that the British meat industry has some of the most rigorous quality standards in the world, and it continues to uncover the wrong-doers effectively. However, there is always room for improvement.
BMPA would like to see more funding to further increase the capabilities of local authorities and FSA. It would also like to make sure that the 99.75% of companies that haven’t done anything wrong are not unfairly judged.