NFU calls for action following horse burger scandal
The National Farmers' Union (NFU) is calling on all UK retailers to address their sourcing and labelling policies following the revelations of tests which discovered horse DNA in burgers.
An investigation is currently being carried out into how horse DNA appeared in burgers sold in Tesco and Iceland.
NFU President Peter Kendall said: "The events of the past few days have severely undermined confidence in the UK food industry and farmers are rightly angry that the integrity of stringent UK-farmed products is being compromised by using cheaper imported alternatives which, evidence suggests, do not meet the robust traceability systems we have in the UK. Farmers are equally concerned that the high standards and traceability they have to meet through farm assurance are not being upheld throughout the supply chain.
"What is particularly concerning is that this revelation comes at a time when farmers are under enormous pressures and consumer confidence is low. Retailers will know they must take immediate action to address both the integrity of all their suppliers, and at the same time ensure that UK products are easily distinguishable and clearly labelled.
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"We need to move this debate on to find lasting solutions by putting an end to co-mingled products which mix UK meat with imported meat, as well as clearer labelling of all ingredients in products to ensure consumers can make a conscious buying decision. All retailers need to engage better with Red Tractor assurance, increasing the use of the logo on pack, and focusing on the longer term sustainability of their UK supply chains. These changes would benefit retailers, farmers and most importantly, the consumer."