Irwin says horse meat issue needs ‘robust response’

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Sunday, February 10th, 2013
Newry & Armagh DUP Assemblyman and Stormont Agriculture Committee member William Irwin MLA has said that an urgent and rigorous investigation is required into practices and procedures following the discovery of horse meat in Northern Ireland. Speaking to Newry Times, Irwin stated, “The industry and indeed the public requires an urgent and robust response from the agencies with responsibility namely DARD and the FSA into this issue and if any questionable activity is discovered then this must be dealt with in a very swift and transparent manner.” “Public confidence must be upheld and our local farmers are exemplary working night and day to put their world class meat products on our shelves. Our home grown produce is second to none and this episode certainly proves the real value of our own local produce.” Irwin added, “We have very strict traceability for our local produce and it is very frustrating that this same type of traceability is not found within imported products. “That is a major drawback and it has been a real bone of contention for our local farmers who strive to produce the best product but see this undercut by inferior meat from countries without anywhere near the same level of monitoring or traceability. That has to change.”
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