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Horsemeat scandal prompts plan for EU fraud crackdown

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - The European Commission proposed more unannounced inspections of food companies and tougher fines for labeling fraud on Monday, after the discovery earlier this year that millions of Europeans ate horsemeat labeled as beef. If approved by EU governments and lawmakers, the new rules would force member states to impose fines equal to the financial gains from proven cases of food fraud, officials said.

Irish firm at centre of horsemeat scandal quits burger market

DUBLIN (Reuters) - The Irish company at the centre of a scandal in Europe over horsemeat in beef products, said on Thursday it is leaving the frozen burger market after selling the factory where burgers containing horse DNA were first discovered. The scandal, which has damaged confidence in parts of the industry and hit sales of processed ready-meals, erupted in January when inspectors found beef burgers produced by Irish company ABP Foods on the shelves of Tesco contained 29 percent horse meat.

EU tests show 1 in 20 beef meals tainted with horse

Thousands of DNA tests on European beef products have revealed extensive food fraud across the European Union, with almost one in 20 meals marketed as beef likely to be tainted with horse, the European Commission said Tuesday. Releasing the results of more than 4,000 tests in recent weeks to detect the potential mislabelling of beef products, the EU executive said 193 products contained positive traces of horsemeat DNA, or 4.55 percent.

Up to 5% horsemeat in 'beef products': EU-wide DNA tests

Thousands of DNA tests on beef products across the European Union found up to 5.0 percent of horsemeat in beef products, the European Commission said Tuesday. The EU on February 15 ordered 2,250 DNA tests on prepared meals said to contain beef in the wake of a horsemeat scandal that hugely undermined consumer confidence in the food industry. It also ordered tests in horse carcasses for the potentially harmful horse drug phenylbutazone, or bute, which is banned from the human food chain.

EU-wide DNA tests show up to 5% horsemeat in beef products

Thousands of DNA tests on beef products across the European Union found the meals contained up to 5.0 percent of horsemeat, the European Commission said Tuesday. The EU on February 15 ordered 2,250 DNA tests on prepared meals said to contain beef in the wake of a horsemeat scandal that hugely undermined consumer confidence in the food industry. It also ordered tests in horse carcasses for the potentially harmful horse drug phenylbutazone, or bute, which is banned from the human food chain.

Dutch raid firm suspected of horsemeat fraud

The Dutch food and consumer watchdog on Tuesday raided a southern trader suspected of horsemeat fraud as part of an official investigation into Europe's tainted beef scandal, the public prosecutor said. Officials confiscated documents from the business based in Breda, named by Dutch media as the Windmeijer Meat Trading company, prosecutors said, adding that a second Cypriot-based company which reports identified as Draap Trading, was also suspected of fraud.

Ikea meatball producer files complaint against supplier

The Swedish producer of the Ikea meatballs found to contain horsemeat said it filed a police report Monday against a Swedish supplier that bought the tainted meat from two Polish abattoirs. "We don't know where in the chain the crime has been committed," said Ola Larsson, a spokesman for Dafgaard, which produces most of the frozen meatballs sold by the Swedish furniture giant in Europe. "Evidence has been handed over to the authorities," the company said in a statement.

UK retailers say latest horsemeat tests negative

LONDON, March 1 (Reuters) - The latest round of testing by Britain's grocers for horsemeat in beef products has produced no new positive results, industry body the British Retail Consortium (BRC) said on Friday. "All the UK's largest supermarkets, and a number of other BRC member food businesses, have now completed 100 percent of their tests on processed minced beef products," it said. "Today they are reporting the results of 361 more tests on 103 products, received over the last week. They have produced no new positive results."

French firm in horsemeat scandal seeks bankruptcy protection

Spanghero filed protection from creditors on Wednesday as the French firm at the heart of the horsemeat scandal rocking Europe sought time to recover from a collapse in sales. The firm based in the southern town of Castelnaudary filed an outline survival plan with a commercial court in the nearby city of Carcassone. The move will allow the company's management up to six months in which to negotiate with creditors under judicial supervision without the immediate threat of bankruptcy hanging over their heads.

Ikea meatball producer finds no horsemeat in products

The producer of Ikea meatballs withdrawn from shelves in 24 countries amid fears they contained horse said Tuesday it had found none of this meat in its product. It was however still awaiting results from tests on meat in which Czech authorities said they found equine DNA, Dafgaard said. "Out of 320 tests performed in the last three weeks, none contain horsemeat," said chief executive Ulf Dafgaard. The contents of products that were ready to be sold had been analysed by the company and by an external laboratory, he said.
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