Horsemeat checks 'ongoing' to Welsh schools, hospitals and council's food

CHECKS ONGOING: Alun Davies AM, the deputy minister for agriculture and Blaenau Gwent AM

CHECKS ONGOING: Alun Davies AM, the deputy minister for agriculture and Blaenau Gwent AM

First published in News
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FOOD supplied to Welsh schools, hospitals and council offices is still being checked to see if it has been contaminated by horse meat, the deputy minister for agriculture announced on Tuesday.

Alun Davies AM, who also represents Blaenau Gwent, said a number of questions remain unanswered and that in itself may cause public concern.

Following the discovery of horse DNA in meat products, the Food Standards Agency (FSA) asked all Welsh local authorities to investigate food manufacturers they considered to be high risk.

Mr Davies AM said the company Sodexo, which serves hospitals, schools and the public sector, has withdrawn all its frozen beef products and is working with the FSA.

In a statement the company said that Tillery Valley Foods in Abertillery, which it owns, is not affected.

On February 22 tests done at a burger factory in Powys found products contained one to two per cent horse meat.

Customers of the burger factory, which has started to withdraw affected products, include a company called Holdsworth which supplies seven local authorities in Wales.

"The batches of potentially contaminated products have been removed from the food chain and further traceability checks are ongoing," said Mr Davies AM in a written statement.

Speaking about the horse meat scandal as a whole, he said: "This is primarily a matter of negligence and potential criminality, rather than a direct threat to human health."

A report by the European Commission on labelling will come before the EU Agriculture Council, of which Mr Davies AM is a member, later this year.

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