An investigation by The Times shows that there has been a 40% reduction in abattoir inspections by the Food Standards Agency over the past six years.
The Centre for Food Policy’s next Food Thinkers event discusses consumer trust in food system.
More than 260 workers have lost their jobs at the meat supplier Russell Hume, which has folded into administration just weeks after an alleged breach of food labelling standards.
The Russell Hume meat company may have changed 'use by' dates on meat, and also country of origin labelling - allegedly serving up African and Australian meat as 'British', according to an ITN News report. Sustain's chief executive Kath Dalmeny comments.
Currently the National Food Crime Unit (NCFU) only gathers intelligence on food fraud. It said it needed ministerial support and £4m - £5m more in funding before it would be able to start proactively investigating food fraud.
The supermarkets are yet to respond to the letter from the UK E Coli Support Group. Campaigners fear that meat safety is already being threatened.
The damning inquiry into the 2 Sisters plant in West Bromwich shows systematic failings with the way our food is inspected. It says that “unannounced visits” are not a surprise and therefore don’t give a true picture of the violations occurring.
The Food Standards Agency has launched an investigation after undercover filming showed workers changing date-of-kill labels, repacking rejected meat and retrieving meat from the floor -- all apparent breaches of hygiene and safety laws.
In response to the Brazilian meat scandal, which involves the world’s biggest beef and chicken exporters, Vicki Hird, Farm Campaign Coordinator of Sustain comments: “The rot exposed at the heart of the Brazilian meat processing industry illustrates well the dangerous impact of a cheap meat supply which drives demand domestically and globally.
The Danish Food and Agriculture Ministry released statistics comparing antibiotic use in Danish organic and conventional pigs in response to a parliamentary question. Conventional pigs were treated with about ten times more doses than organic pigs - and for weaner pigs up to 20 times. In the UK, data on antibiotic use by species is not yet available but sales data suggests that use in British pigs and poultry is about 4 or 5 times higher than in Denmark. If UK organic pigs receive similar amounts of antibiotics as Danish ones, then the difference between UK organic and conventional pigs could be about 40 or 50 fold.
Lord Krebs told the Oxford Farming Conference that organic farming did not necessarily mean more environmentally friendly farming. Helen Browning, chief executive of Sustain member the Soil Association has said she is bemused at Lord Krebs hostility towards organic methods.
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