After three horse carcasses, of six recently flagged for testing in the UK as the result of the European horsemeat scandal, tested positive for trace amounts of phenylbutazone (bute), British Food Standards Agency testing protocols have been changed. From now on, horsemeat can only be shipped out of abattoirs after it has been proven to be clear of bute.
While bute is said to be carcinogenic if ingested by humans, French Agriculture Minister Stephane Le Foll, has stated that the low levels of the drug found in these carcasses does not pose a health risk.
The tainted meat was obtained from horses legally slaughtered in Britain.
Meanwhile, in Sweden, horsemeat has made its way into IKEA’s frozen Swedish meatballs. Reports indicate that the meatballs have been sold in 13 European countries. Canada is not affected as the meatballs sold in Canada are produced in the US. It is a situation isolated to one Swedish supplier.
Since the discovery, IKEA has managed to prevent more than 700kg of the product from entering the retail system and all tainted product has been removed from store shelves.
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