‘Misinformation could put jobs unnecessarily at risk’ – Freeza Meats
The Newry company at the centre of today’s Food Standard Agency revelations has distanced itself from the horsemeat found on its premises, insisting the meat belonged to another supplier based in the South.
According to the agency, 12 samples were carried out at Freeza Meats and two came back positive for containing horse meat at 80%.
A spokesperson for Freeza Meats, Newry said, “In August 2012 we were approached by the meat trader McAdam Foods Services in Co. Monaghan (Republic of Ireland) to purchase a parcel of raw material, which we declined.
“Martin McAdam subsequently asked us to hold his product in storage which we did in goodwill in a separated area of the storage facility.
“This raw material was not purchased by Freeza Meats and never reached the food chain through this company. We have under legal jurisdiction been required to detain the product in quarantine awaiting the direction of the local Environmental Health Office.
The spokesperson continued, “All tests that have been carried out routinely on our own finished products i.e. (burgers) have been negative. There have been no traces of equine DNA in any samples taken from Freeza Meats products.
“At all times we have worked in conjunction with the Environmental Health Office who have been fully aware of the background to this McAdam product from the outset. We have also sought the authority of the Environmental Health Officer to remove / dispose of this product from our premises.
The spokesperson warned that jobs may be put in jeopardy as a result of what they described as ‘misinformation’.
“We are providing employment in this area since 1988, employing more than 45 people. We are fully committed to working with our suppliers and customers. Given the sensitivities of the area in which we work jobs could be put unnecessarily at risk by misinformation.
“We look forward to working with the relevant agencies in Northern Ireland to resolve this issue.”
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