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Horse Hockey Maybe, But Horse Meat?

This story reminded me of the sweet lady who was so upset with the bunnies on the menu in Camden. Good thing she is practically a vegetarian in the US because the UK and now more of Eurpoe is being rocked from finding out, after the fact, they were eating Mr. Ed.

The Story goes:

LONDON — It’s been about a month since a factory in Ireland let the pony out of the stable and admitted to finding traces of equine DNA in beef patties it made for export to the United Kingdom.

Since then, dinner tables across Europe have been finding out almost daily that at some point they probably were graced with an uninvited guest.

The latest discovery was made by the Swedish furniture giant IKEA. Inspectors in the Czech Republic said Monday they found traces of horse meat in frozen meatballs made in Sweden for the furniture maker.

IKEA spokeswoman Ylva Magnusson said meatballs from the same batch had gone out to Slovakia, Hungary, France, Britain, Portugal, the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Italy, Greece, Cyprus and Ireland. Magnusson said meatballs from that batch were taken off the shelves in IKEA stores in all those countries.

Other shipments of meatballs were not affected, including to the USA, even though they all come from the same Swedish supplier, Magnusson said.

“Our global recommendation is to not recall or stop selling meatballs,” she said.

Authorities are finding out that tracing the origins of the horse-meat scandal is a bit like playing Whac-A-Mole.

Over the weekend, horse meat was found on pizza in Denmark. Last week, Swiss food giant Nestle and frozen foodmaker Birds Eye were forced to withdraw products from supermarkets in Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom..

A US professor chimed in:

In the age of the multiple-use factory, as well as meat sourcing from a multitude of suppliers, the European experience may not be unique.

“We (the U.S.) get meat from lots of countries,” said Marion Nestle, a food studies professor at New York University, in e-mailed comments. “One U.S. Department of Agriculture study said that a single pound of hamburger meat might come from 400 different cows.

“If there was a lot of horse meat around, it could easily get mixed in and nobody would notice if nobody checked,” she said.

Nestle said that while Congress permits horses to be slaughtered in the USA it won’t allow inspectors to be paid out of tax revenues, effectively banning slaughter. Instead, the horses are sent to Canada and Mexico to be killed, she wrote in a blog post on her website foodpolitics.com, totalling as many as 140,000 since 2006.

Who Knew?

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