Burger King, one of the most popular fast-food chains in Britain, said on Thursday it had stopped using one of the firms caught up in the scandal of supplying grocers with beef that contained horse meat.
The British food industry has been rocked by the revelation last week that retailers including market leader Tesco and smaller chains Aldi, Lidl and Iceland had sold beef productsthat contained horse meat.
Food safety experts say the horse meat discovery has raised concerns about the food supply chain and the ability to trace meat ingredients.On its website, Burger King said it had decided to replace all Silvercrest products in Britain and Ireland with products from another approved Burger King supplier.
“This is a voluntary and precautionary measure,” Burger King, famed for its flame-grilled burgers, said. “We are working diligently to identify suppliers that can produce 100 percent pure Irish and British beef products that meet our high quality standards.”
The beef burger products from the grocers, which were revealed last week to have tested positive for horse DNA, were produced by Liffey Meats and Silvercrest Foods in Ireland and Dalepak Hambleton in Britain.
Tesco, Britain’s biggest retailer, immediately withdrew from sale all products from its supplier, Silvercrest, which is owned by ABP Food Group, saying it was working with authorities and the supplier to urgently understand how horse meat came to be in the product.
ABP Foods said at the time that the source of the contamination was a beef based product bought from two third-party suppliers outside of Ireland.
The discovery of horse meat could be both embarrassing and damaging for the retailers involved. The mass-selling Sun newspaper carried the Burger King announcement on its front page on Thursday with the headline “Shergar King”, in reference to a famous racehorse that was kidnapped and never seen again.
IN THE HANDS OF KILL BUYERS! When horses are purchased at auction by buyers intending to kill them, they're hauled away in double- decker tractor trailers where they are beaten and often blinded with baseball bats to mollify them. After crossing the border into Mexico, the animals are stabbed on each side-an act to tenderize their meat-and immobilized. Workers, then saw the horses legs off, at the knee and hang them to bleed out-all while the horses are ALIVE! (This is an excerpt, from an article written by Missy Diaz, crediting Victoria Mc Cullough and Sen. Joe Abruzzo for bringing awareness of horse slaughter, to Florida. In 2010 Florida Legislation unanimously passed the Horse Protection Bill, making it a felony to slaughter horses for personal or commercial use.)