Polish firm Food Service ‒ one of the suppliers at the centre of the storm surrounding meat imports which were allegedly contaminated with horse DNA ‒ has protested its innocence in response to questions from FoodManfacture.co.uk.
The boss of Food Service Marek Czerniej vehemently denied claims that his company handled horse meat.
Czerniej said: “Our production plants do not process (slaughter, debone, pack or freeze) or store any equine meat. The only activity of the company is pork slaughter and pork and beef deboning.”
‘Reliable, trustful supplier’
He insisted that all the firm’s plants complied strictly with European standards. “Food Service is a reliable, trustful supplier to many customers throughout Europe and puts the utmost attention to customer care.”
Czerniej added: “Clarifying the situation with horse DNA found in burger products in Ireland and the UK was in the interests of Food Service.”
His comments followed a statement from McAdam Foods – the Irish meat supplier blamed by ABP for supplying beef products contaminated with horse DNA to its subsidiary Silvercrest Foods – naming Food Service as one of two Polish suppliers.
The Irish meat supplier disputed the tonnages and timings implicit in ABP’s statement.
Tesco, Burger King, the Co-operative Group and other retailers cancelled their meat contracts with Silvercrest Foods after meat products allegedly supplied via by McAdam Foods were found to contain horse DNA.
Food Service’s website claimed: “Our two up-to-date processing plants, qualified and skilled personnel, together with our specialised means of transport, guarantee good quality, competitive prices and reliability of deliveries.”
No one from Flexi Foods or Mipol Poland was available for comment when contacted by FoodManufacture.co.uk.
This week Asda became the latest retailer to withdraw frozen beef burgers from sale.
The retailer pulled its own-label beef burgers as a “precautionary measure” after tests at Freeza Meats in Newry, County Down, found beef stored at its freezer plant contained up to 80% horse meat.
Freeza Meats said the product was stored on behalf of McAdam as “an act of goodwill”.
The firm confirmed it did not buy the meat but held it on behalf of another company.
No horse DNA has been discovered in beef burgers supplied by Freeza Meats.
If you have information about the contamination of meat products, contact the author – in confidence – at Michael.firstname.lastname@example.org .
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