Horse meat in lasagna has been discovered in the UK — but, unlike the recent horse meat in burgers scandal, the frozen dinners found to contain horse was sometimes a shocking 60 to 100 percent, rather than trace levels.
Horse meat in lasagna dinners branded under the “Findus” name was discovered in testing, and retailers Tesco and Aldi have warned UK shoppers not to eat the meals should they have any at home in the freezer.
Britain’s food safety authorities say that there is no evidence to prove a specific risk but admitted that there is some concern over traces of veterinary drugs considered unsafe for human consumption. According to the paper, the drug phenylbutazone could be present in the horse meat in lasagna, and the substance is not cleared for human consumption.
In a statement addressing the horse meat in lasagna, the FSA said:
“As part of its ongoing investigation into mislabelled meat, the Food Standards Agency has confirmed that the meat content of beef lasagne products recalled by Findus has tested positive for more than 60 per cent horse meat … Findus withdrew the beef lasagne products after its French supplier, Comigel, raised concerns about the type of meat used in the lasagne.”
The statement continued:
“We have no evidence to suggest that this is a food safety risk. However, the FSA has ordered Findus to test the lasagne for the veterinary drug phenylbutazone, or ‘bute’. Animals treated with phenylbutazone are not allowed to enter the food chain as it may pose a risk to human health.”
Several other items were withdrawn as the investigation into high levels of horse meat in lasagna in the UK continues.