Testing extended to yet more beef products

Testing extended to yet more beef products

The Food Standards Agency has expanded its UK-wide survey of food authenticity in processed meat products being carried out through local authorities. It will now encompass 514 different products including minced meat, meat products and meat preparations (such as kebabs with seasoning). Products such as gelatine, beef dripping, stock cubes, steak, stewing steak and ready meals which contain beef that is not minced, are also included.

The sampling for the first two phases will be carried out by 28 local authorities and will include beef-based foods that are sold pre-packed, or ‘loose’ (for example, cafe sandwiches).

In phase one 224 samples of raw comminuted (minced) beef products including burgers, minced beef, beef sausage or meat balls checked for horse and pork DNA. This phase is ongoing and is part of the original protocol, which you can see here (http://www.food.gov.uk/news-updates/news/2013/feb/protocol#.USSj0-g36Hk)
Phase two is on 140 samples of beef-based ready meals including frozen, chilled or canned lasagne, chilli con carne, cottage pie, ravioli, cannelloni and spaghetti bolognese checked for horse and pork DNA. This phase began on 14th February and sampling will be completed on 22nd February.

The latest phase will be on 150 samples and will be taken as part of a European Commission survey (official control programme) and checked for horse DNA. These include products marketed or labelled as containing beef as a major ingredient such as minced meat, meat products and meat preparations (such as kebabs with seasoning). Products such as gelatine, beef dripping, stock cubes, steak, stewing steak and ready meals which contain beef that is not minced, are included.

Work is scheduled to start the week beginning 25th February and the Food Standards Agency will be allocating them to other local authorities across the UK.

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