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Tonnes of horse meat shipped to Germany
Photo: DPA

Tonnes of horse meat shipped to Germany

Published: 17 Feb 2013 14:46 GMT+01:00
Updated: 17 Feb 2013 14:46 GMT+01:00

Several tonnes of frozen lasagne and cannelloni tainted with horse meat have reportedly made it to supermarket shelves in Germany over the past three months alone.

At least 359,722 packages of food were imported from the Luxembourg factory implicated in the Europe-wide horse meat scandal to Germany between November and January Der Spiegel reported on Sunday. That means a potential 144 tonnes of products containing horse meat could have landed on store shelves.

The majority of the products had been in cold storage in the town of Neuss in North Rhine-Westphalia before being delivered throughout the country. Consumer protection advocates are calling for more controls.

“The European Union has strong food laws. But rules only make sense if they’re observed and enforced,” German Minister of Agriculture and Consumer Protection Ilse Aigner wrote in a guest column for Bild am Sonntag.

Anita Tack, environment minister for the state of Brandenburg, said rules for labelling ready-meat products should be introduced promptly. Green Party parliamentary group chairwoman Renate Künast spoke out in favour of including information about source farms on processed meat packaging.

Federal and state consumer ministers will meet on Monday to discuss the consequences of the horse meat scandal.

According to Der Spiegel reports, previous efforts to introduce labelling on processed products were hampered by opposition from countries including Germany. “Back then we called for more far-reaching regulation but these were rejected in particular by liberal as well as conservative German representatives,” Green Party MEP Martin Häusling told the magazine.

“It will be hard for the food industry to win back the trust of consumers,” Aigner wrote, adding that food “must contain what it says it does.”

Supermarket chain Rewe announced on Sunday that it was taking two frozen food products suspected of containing horse meat off its shelves. It follows similar action from several other major German chains.

The horse meat scandal has affected companies and consumers throughout Europe. Producers, suppliers and distributors of convenience food are being investigated.

DPA/DAPD/The Local/kkf

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Your comments about this article

15:55 February 17, 2013 by pepsionice
If you cooked like Oma, and bought your own materials from the local grocery, baker, and butcher....then you wouldn't worry about some frozen food section. I suspect that these Saturday night cooks will make this very clear statement that you ought to make your dinners, and not worry about who put what into the meal. They might be right.
19:18 February 17, 2013 by rosenthalenglish
In the UK,many people started to use supermarkets because the local butcher was giving cheap cuts as expensive ones and therefore diddling the customer.What goes round goes round seems to apply here
20:59 February 17, 2013 by Berlin fuer alles
The Shergar mystery is solved then.
21:25 February 17, 2013 by US-TommyBoy
What's the matter Dobbler? Why the long face?
07:37 February 18, 2013 by wethepeople2012
I wonder if prices for lasagna will go up since they won't be able to pass off horse meat as beef?
07:55 February 18, 2013 by Zillo
What about the great 'BIO' or in the UK 'Organic' rip off ... how the hell do I know it is Bio?? Oh yes it says so on the label ... watch this space, this will be next!!
11:44 February 18, 2013 by jlambert
Who cares! There is a Horse butcher down the street from my house.
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