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'Horsegate' update

The media coverage on 'Horsegate' seems to have quietened down in recent weeks. The British meat industry continued to position itself as the 'default option' for assured supplies in the wake of the scandal, and the NFU recently took the opportunity to remind Tesco of its commitment to source more British meat

With news that the performance of the Food Standards Agency in relation to the contamination of processed beef products with horsemeat would be subject to an independent review, the media fascination with every ‘twist and turn’ in the ‘Horsegate’ saga seemed to diminish.

The Soil Association reported that sales of organic foods were at their highest level for nine months after three years of continuous decline.

The Consumer Association launched a new report, entitled the 'Future of Food', which made the following conclusion:

The recent horsemeat scandal has put the spotlight on how our food is produced, how much we pay for it and who ultimately controls what we eat.

Although primarily an issue of fraud, it has raised much wider questions about the consequences of an ever-lengthening food supply chain and how government develops food policy.”

The home meat industry spared no efforts to position itself as the antidote to any anxieties about the provenance of meat products, as evidenced by these recent trade advertisements. The Danish pig industry should also take the opportunities to promote the robust traceability and controls within its own supply chain.

Tesco were very much in the public spotlight when the scandal broke in January and the NFU recently reminded the company of its commitments to source more British meat.