BERLIN (AFP) – Horsemeat found in beef products withdrawn from German shelves has been traced to a supplier in Poland, newsweekly Spiegel reported on Sunday, citing European officials.
Spiegel said that beef products with traces of horse found in goulash sold by low-cost retailer Aldi were produced by German firm Dreistern Konserven, which in turn bought its meat via a dealer from Mipol, a Polish-based firm.
Dreistern Konserven acknowledged in a statement on its website that traces of horse DNA had been discovered in its products but insisted it was merely a processing firm.
“Dreistern is not involved in slaughtering nor the chopping up of meat. It buys meat already chopped up, either fresh or frozen, only from certified meat deliverers,” the statement said.
Nearly 50,000 jars of this goulash were delivered to Aldi, said Spiegel, citing information from the European Union’s Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF).
Spiegel also said another unnamed supplier in northern Poland had delivered some 20 tonnes of meat worth 60,000 euros ($80,000) to German firm Vossko via a Danish dealer.
Vossko supplies Liechtenstein-based firm Hilcona, which in turn supplies German firm Gusto, which manufactured beef tortelloni that was withdrawn from Austrian and German branches of budget food firm Lidl after horsemeat was discovered.
EU authorities are scrambling to reassure consumers after falsely-labelled meat has come to light in several European countries via a sprawling chain of production spanning a maze of abattoirs and suppliers across the continent.