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Dutch supermarkets pull frozen food over horsemeat fears

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Dutch supermarkets on Tuesday became the latest European shops to remove frozen meals from their shelves amid fears they may contain horsemeat disguised as beef.

"PLUS supermarkets have withdrawn frozen lasagne of the Primafrost brand from shelves as a precaution," spokeswoman Debbie Huisman told AFP.

She said the withdrawn products were not dangerous but could contain horsemeat without it being marked on the packaging.

Boni supermarkets have withdrawn the same product, said Roel Vincken, spokesman for the Dutch Food and Goods Authority (NVWA).

"This is a decision that the supermarkets are taking themselves, we have to wait for the results of the enquiry to take official decisions," he told AFP.

The NVWA on Monday opened a probe to see whether any beef products stocked on shelves contain horsemeat as the frozen food scandal spreads across Europe.

The authorities are also investigating whether any Dutch company has been involved in fraudulent horsemeat trading.

The first results of the probe are expected early next week.

Supermarket chains in Britain, France and Sweden have pulled millions of frozen ready meals, including lasagne and moussaka dishes, from store shelves after it emerged last week that meals labelled as containing processed beef were actually found to contain up to 100 percent horsemeat.

Horsemeat is readily available on Dutch shelves and the country produced about 1,000 tonnes of horsemeat in 2011, according to the Dutch central statistics office.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130212/dutch-supermarkets-pull-frozen-food-over-horsemeat-fears