BY KAREN THOMSON
- Ten million burgers have been taken off shelves as a result of the scandal.
- The apology came as a reported £300 million was wiped off Tesco’s stock market value.
- Tesco prints full page apologies in papers as a result of the scandal
Criminal prosecutions could be brought against retailers who used horse meat in their products the government has said.
Environment minister David Heath told the commons that standards were generally very high in the British food industry but acknowledged the seriousness of the discovery.
He said: “It is very important neither you, nor anyone else in this House, talks down the British food industry at a time when the standards in that industry are of a very high level.
“Because something has been discovered in Ireland, which is serious, which may lead to criminal proceedings, does not undermine the very serious efforts which are taken by retailers, by processors and by producers in this country to ensure traceability and ensure standards of food that are available to consumers.”
The FSAI analysed 27 beefburger products with best before dates from last June to March 2014 with 10 of the 27 products – 37% – testing positive for horse DNA and 85% testing positive for pig DNA.
Monica Lennon (31) from Hamilton said: “Vegetarians and meat-eaters alike must have confidence in what they are buying. I choose a vegetarian diet as a healthy option that benefits the environment too. Perhaps veggie meals will see a sharp rise.
Colette Mckale (20) from Glasgow said: “It has made me think twice about what meat products I would buy. I think it is wrong that they have falsely advertised these products. I would definitely think twice about shopping in these supermarkets again.”