20 August 2001
Firms deny using BSE-risk meat

By FWi staff

ONLY one British food firm will admit to using mechanically recovered meat at the height of the BSE epidemic, according to a survey by The Independent.

This is despite the fact that that 5000 tonnes of the foodstuff was used each year before it was banned in 1995, says the newspaper.

MRM is widely believed to be the most likely route by which BSE infected humans.

A quarter of the members of the British Meat Manufacturers Association refused to take part in the survey, despite the industry promising to be more open.

Sainsburys supermarket chain was the only company which admitted to the possibility that it used MRM before it introduced a ban in 1993.

Recently, the governments BSE advisors SEAC complained about the lack of co-operation from food companies in its efforts to identify which had used MRM.

The Independent contacted 51 members of the meat association. All but one of the 37 who responded denied using beef MRM.

However, some pointed out that because of changes in management they could not be sure.

FREE NEWS UPDATE
CLICK HERE to receive FWis FREE new daily email newsletter to keep up-to-date with the latest news of foot-and-mouth and other farming-related stories