Ritchie questions government: ‘What advice did departments have over horse meat?’

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Thursday, February 21st, 2013

SDLP MP for South Down, Margaret Ritchie, has called for the UK government to clarify whether they were aware of the possibility that horse meat had entered the food chain prior to the current scandal.

Speaking to Newry Times, Ritchie said it is ‘absolutely vital’ that the Department for Health and the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs clarify exactly what advice they were given and when. “It has been alleged that they were aware of the potential contamination of the food chain as far back as 2011,” Ritchie blasted. “I will be seeking clarification from the Secretary of State on the exact nature of any representations that he received on this. If they did know they must reveal what action they took at the time or explain why this advice was ignored. “The government have been behind the curve on this and they urgently need to introduce a more robust regime for food testing and provenance certification. She added, “The public have a right to know what they are eating and the UK government need restore confidence as soon as possible for consumers and our vital food processing industry.”
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