BSE: Beef adverts were misleading

26 October 2000

BSE: Beef adverts were misleading

By Alistair Driver

A FORMER boss of the Meat and Livestock Commission exaggerated the safety of British beef during the BSE crisis, says the report from the BSE inquiry.

Colin Maclean, former MLC director-general, is criticised for an advertising campaign in 1995 that contained hyperbole and displaced accuracy, it says.

Mr Maclean was also responsible for inaccurate statements which were made to the public on behalf of the MLC in 1990, the report says.

These statements exaggerated the safety of beef and suggested that precautions that had been in place had been unnecessary, it adds.

The former MLC boss should have been more careful because the statements made by his organisation were capable of misleading the public, the report says.

Mr Maclean is also criticised for sending government advisers a list of model answers which the MLC wanted used when facing questions regarding BSE.

Mr Maclean retired from the MLC last year after being appointed to the post in 1992. Before that he served as MLC technical director from 1988-92.

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