Police probe Surrey abattoir’s labelling

A Surrey abattoir is under investigation over allegations of inaccurately labelled meat products.

The Guildford site, which until recently was owned by the Chitty Food Group, is being jointly investigated by Surrey Police, the Food Standards Agency, Trading Standards and DEFRA.

A police spokesman handling the investigation declined to give details of the allegations, but said the FSA was keen to stress there was no evidence of any risk to consumers.

Anglo Beef Processors recently bought the abattoir and boning plant from Chitty Food Group as part of its expansion into southern England – ABP also acquired an abattoir in Sturminster Newton earlier this year.

ABP said it was not involved in the meat labelling probe, as the allegations concerned operations at the abattoir prior to its takeover.

“We have wanted to expand our services to beef farmers in the south of England for some time, and the two acquisitions this year give us additional capacity of around 1500 cattle a week,” ABP managing director Tom Kirwan said.

“Alongside the recent acquisitions we have plans to continue to expand our beef operations through an on-going investment programme.”

It is not the first time the Guildford site has hit the headlines. In August this year Chitty Food Group was prosecuted by Thames Water and fined for 10 breaches of effluent regulations and for failing to use proper equipment.