The all-day probe by the Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (EFRA) committee, will hear from Boparan and a range of organisations such as the Food Standards Agency (FSA), British Poultry Council, British Retail Consortium Global Standards and Red Tractor.
The short inquiry will look into the role and performance of the regulatory and accreditation bodies in maintaining food standards and food safety, and the potential ramifications of the allegations made against 2 Sisters for the poultry sector and the wider food chain.
The inquiry follows an undercover joint investigation by The Guardian and ITV News carried out in August, which claimed that chicken that was sent back by supermarket distribution centres was being repackaged before being returned to other retailers.
The claims, backed by what was said to be video evidence, said workers mistreated chickens and changed slaughter dates and locations in moves that could affect food safety.
In an article today (October 25), The Guardian reported that the worker filmed changing labels at the factory had been dismissed. When FoodManufacture.co.uk approached 2 Sisters Food Group for a response to this report, we were told that the company’s position would be revealed later today in the evidence it gave to the select committee hearing.
The FSA had already extended its investigation into 2 Sisters’ poultry plants in England and Wales following the revelations. Its initial investigation revealed “issues requiring management attention” in relation to some aspects of staff training and stock control.
EFRA chicken food safety hearing
The EFRA committee oral evidence sessions will hear from the following witnesses.
- Richard Griffiths, chief executive, British Poultry Council
- Jim Moseley, chief executive, Red Tractor
- Sue Lockhart, head of assurance, Red Tractor
- Mark Proctor, ceo, BRC Global Standards
- David Brackston, technical director, BRC Global Standards
- Jan Britton, chief executive, Sandwell Metropolian Borough Council
- Bob Charnley, trading standards officer, Sandwell Metropolitan Council
- Jason Feeney CBE, chief executive, FSA
- Jose Gomez-Luengo, audit veterinary leader, FSA
- Ranjit Singh Boparan, chief executive, 2 Sisters Food Group
- Chris Gilbert-Wood, group technical director, 2 Sisters Food Group