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Horsemeat

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ticktock Wed 16-Jan-13 09:18:59

"Frozen beefburgers on sale in Aldi, Iceland, Lidl and Tesco found to contain traces of horsemeat, says food safety watchdog" - in the Guardian. Can you believe this?!

Riverwalk Wed 16-Jan-13 09:26:17

The Tesco ones had 29% horsemeat, hardly a trace!

Since BSE we've been led to believe that supermarkets and the regulatory authorities had very strict practices in place and that this sort of thing couldn't happen.

Notsogrand Wed 16-Jan-13 09:32:32

My first very irreverant thought was whether this was the reason we did so well at the Olympics. Giddly up!

Sorry!!! grin

Nelliemoser Wed 16-Jan-13 09:40:54

What is every on getting their knickers in a twist about here. It is not unfit for human consumption.

The French have dedicated butchers for horsemeat.

If you are happy to eat other dead animals why not horses? They are probably far more humanely reared than many stock animals.

Nelliemoser Wed 16-Jan-13 09:44:50

Every one

Gally Wed 16-Jan-13 09:54:17

Unless they were being sold solely as 'beef' burgers I can't see the problem. I used to walk past a horse meat butcher every day on my way to school (Surrey Street Market in Croydon) so it's hardly a new phenomenon. I suppose these days, wot wiv 'elf 'n safety, hands have to be thrown up in horror at anything different. Reminds me of the millions of the Kenyan green beans that were taken off the shelves by Tesco because they weren't all the same length.

Riverwalk Wed 16-Jan-13 09:54:33

Nellie for me the issue is that the quality-control system has obviously gone awry somewhere; and the fact that horsemeat is cheaper than beef so customers have been conned.

nightowl Wed 16-Jan-13 09:55:22

My initial reaction Nellie was exactly the same as yours, and i agree that it is hypocritical to eat some animals and not others. However on reflection I think there is a difference in eating animals like horses and dogs and cats that we have bred to have a different purpose, and in so doing have caused them to develop a trusting bond with humans. It is unlikely that these horses were bred in herds destined for the dinner table, and many may have been loved and loving companions who through no fault of their own ended up surplus to requirements. I find it disturbing that we have such a disposable attitude towards animals sad

ticktock Wed 16-Jan-13 10:08:44

Gally, Nelliemoser and nightowl - I think the issue is that they were branded as beef burgers, so they shouldn't contain any horsemeat.

"In one sample, Tesco Everyday Value Beef Burgers, the level of positive DNA indicated horsemeat accounted for 29% relative to the beef content. Many of them were also found to contain pig DNA."

Pig DNA is even worse for those who's religion states they can't eat pork.

Nelliemoser Wed 16-Jan-13 10:27:57

I get that point but are they always branded as beef "burgers." or burgers.

Can they brand them as beef burgers if there is just a certain majority percentage of beef and put in other stuff as required? I suspect they may and that only 100% beef would not have anything else added.
As a veggie I don't know these days.

It would not surprise me if some manufacturers did just brand them as as "burgers"! I suspect that a lot of people would probably not notice the difference unless they were on the look out.

I will look on some packets next time I am in the co-op

Bags Wed 16-Jan-13 10:35:05

The venison burgers we eat contain some pork as well. Fine with that, and it says so on the packet. Happy to eat horse burgers too. So long as food is farmed compassionately (see CIWF - Compassion in World Farming), and slaughtered humanely (not by some ridiculous religious ritual), I'll eat whatever passes for good food.

Bags Wed 16-Jan-13 10:36:57

Goes without saying that I think meat burgers are good food. Not all burgers are equal though.

Bags Wed 16-Jan-13 10:51:43

Pinched off Twitter: "Tesco, for when you could eat a horse" (Fraser Nelson).

Replies: "Neigh chance!" and "I prefer My Lidl Pony"

Chcuckle.

Greatnan Wed 16-Jan-13 10:53:09

I thought that most supermarket meat was Halal these days, because they don't want the cost of buying from two different sources. Perhaps you could check that out Bags. In France, many supermarkets have a designated Halal counter and freezer.
I have eaten horsemeat in France, and found it just a bit tough. Whale meat, which we had during the war, was horrible.

Greatnan Wed 16-Jan-13 10:58:33

http://www.spectator.co.uk/features/6319003/i-refuse-to-buy-meat-from-supermarkets-until-they-ban-halal-slaughter/

Riverwalk Wed 16-Jan-13 11:05:20

The animals are still pre-stunned so that fits in with what we meat-eaters would find acceptable, but the halal bit is that a prayer is said. I'm not bothered by the prayer!

There is a lot of hysteria about halal products - anyone who eats meat must know that animal slaughter is a messy business.

Riverwalk Wed 16-Jan-13 11:08:18

I should have said that in UK abbatoirs they are pre-stunned.

Apparently in New Zealand ALL lamb is halal, because of the importance of its export market I presume.

feetlebaum Wed 16-Jan-13 12:00:39

GreatNan - yes, we tried whale-meat - once! Dreadful - worse than tinned Snoek (remember that?)

I have no objections to horse-meat - it's known for cleanliness and a bit sweet as I recall.

I do object to ritual slaughter of animals that have not been stunned, as cruel and barbaric - like many things associated with belief in the supernatural,

feetlebaum Wed 16-Jan-13 12:06:44

A hamburger is made from beef - so what the blood and stomach pills is a "beefburger"?

A hamburger is named after the city of Hamburg. So where the blazes is Beefburg?

I worry about these things...

janeainsworth Wed 16-Jan-13 12:08:44

For me it is a trade descriptions issue.
If I buy burgers or sausages I look very carefully at the percentage meat composition and only buy things that have the highest meat content.
if I picked up some burgers that said 219% horsemeat I wouldn't buy them.
I heard a senior Tesco bod on Radio 4 this morning.
He was trying to make out that Tesco 'trusted' their suppliers and it was the supplier's fault, not Tesco's quality control's fault.
Yeah, right. What about the customers' trust?
I hope they get fined many millions of pounds and I am glad I now have a really good reason never to buy stuff from them again.
angry

janeainsworth Wed 16-Jan-13 12:09:22

Er, 29% horsemeat

Bags Wed 16-Jan-13 12:30:15

jane, is that because you don't want to eat horse meat or because 29% meat is not enough in a meat burger (with which latter sentiment, I agree)?

Bags Wed 16-Jan-13 12:30:58

I mean, if it was 29% horse and, say, 60% beef, what then?

Bags Wed 16-Jan-13 12:35:19

Tesco are getting rid of their 29% horse burgers. More food waste.

Riverwalk Wed 16-Jan-13 12:44:41

The processing company which supplied the 29% horse burger has either very slack quality-control or been acting illegally by mixing in undeclared horsemeat.

They could well be as slack with other regulations e.g. hygiene.

I have no moral objection to eating horse - more concerned with the shenanigans of the food industry.

I wonder who the buck stops with hmm

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