14 Feb 2013

UK meat firms raided in horsemeat scandal

10:05 am on 14 February 2013

A slaughterhouse and a meat firm in Britain have been raided by police and food safety officials probing alleged mislabelling of horsemeat as beef.

The UK's Food Standards Agency suspended operations at a slaughterhouse in Yorkshire and a Welsh meat firm, detained all meat found and seized paperwork, including customer lists from the two companies.

The West Yorkshire plant was thought to have supplied horse carcasses to the Aberystwyth plant, which were then allegedly sold on as beef for kebabs and burgers, the BBC reports.

The latest developments, shifting the focus from central Europe to mainland Britain, come before a meeting between UK Environment Secretary, supermarkets and food producers about the horsemeat breach.

The discovery of horsemeat in beef products has led to processed food being withdrawn from sale in Britain, France and Sweden.

It is feared up to 16 EU countries may be affected. The scandal began in Ireland in mid-January when that country's food safety authority discovered horsemeat in frozen beef burgers stocked by a number of UK supermarket chains.