Saturday, 23 February 2013

What the hell are EU eating?

On this European continent of deceptive labels it turns out that several major supermarket concerns are selling horse meat under the guise of beef or pork. A map in today's paper shows the following countries affected: Norway, Sweden, Finland, Great Britain, Ireland, France, Spain, Portugal, Corsica, Sardinia, Italy, Switzerland, Germany, Holland, Denmark, Austria, Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Cyprus, and Greece. More European countries will doubtless join the list in the coming days. 

Food scandals here in Austria have also involved eggs and dairy products. A supplier was recently sentenced to three years for claiming that his eggs were fresh eggs from Austria whereas they were out-of-date eggs from Slovakia. Another supplier is under investigation as a result of horse meat being found in his beef sausages. According to one newspaper report the sausage horse meat was stored in a warehouse with Canadian horse meat intended for feeding animals in an Austrian zoo. 

A few years ago a major supermarket concern sent out-of-date dairy products, including yoghurt, to Hungary for re-dating. The European-wide list of food scandals must be almost endless.

But it is not just these kinds scandals that make me angry, it's mainly the conditions that many of the animals which end up in the supermarket chillers have to endure en route

An accident the other day on a German autobahn between Munich and Salzburg involved a truck carrying 700 Ferkel (young pigs) which overturned. Some of the pigs spilled out onto the road and died instantly. All the others, including those uninjured, were ordered to be destroyed, and were destroyed on the spot, as following the accident "their adrenalin levels were too high for them to be considered fit to be eaten". 

I have to ask: Wouldn't the adrenalin levels of the young pigs already be too high prior to the accident? This diesel truck crammed full of living swine had already travelled the full length of Germany from north to south! If that's not stress enough to send their adrenalin levels through the roof I don't know what is.

So the question remains, what the hell are we eating?


  1. We're eating 'mindlessness'. What a great answer! Wish I'd thought of it.

  2. Perhaps it is as well we don't always know Gwil. But I no longer buy any meat from my supermarket. I would sooner eat less meat and pay more for what I do buy from my local (and trusted) butcher.

  3. Local butchers are proud of the quality of their meat and they know its source. I too buy from them when I need meat.


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