11/02/13 07:34 CET
| updated xx mn ago
| updated at xx
Government ministers in Britain are claiming a complex conspiracy lies behind the widening horsemeat scandal which they say has its roots in globalisation.
As an inquiry gets underway into how horsemeat has ended up in food products supposed to be made from beef, the UK’s Environment Secretary Owen Paterson said consumer confidence in quality control and labelling had been shattered.
“I’ve got a horrible feeling that we are looking at a major international criminal conspiracy. Yes, there is a very large volume of material moving around the world the whole time and it appears that at some point a correct product has been substituted by something that is not correct.”
With frozen food products being hit hardest by the scandal, details are emerging of a complex network of slaughterhouses and middle men standing between the farm and the supermarkets.
MEP José Bové of the Greens/European Free Alliance group in the European Parliament went further saying: “For me effectively there is a business organising what amounts to fraud. And I would say clearly that this is a mafia at work trying to cheat consumers and of course making a lot of money at the same time.”
Meanwhile officials are now investigating whether the horsemeat found in Britain and France came from a Romanian abattoir.
Romania’s prime minister said on Monday any fraud over horsemeat had not happened in his country and he was angered by suggestions it might have been.
“From all the data we have at the moment, there is no breach of European rules committed by companies from Romania or on Romanian territory,” Victor Ponta told a news conference. “I am very angry, to be honest.”
- 1Women ‘tortured and murdered’ in German ‘House of Horrors’
- 2Incredible scenes in the Turkish parliament
- 3Political turmoil on the horizon in Turkey?
- 4Migrants in Idomeni react angrily to idea of visa-free Schengen travel for Turkey
- 5Donald Trump is set to be the Republican US presidential candidate
- 1Incredible scenes in the Turkish parliament
- 2Denmark extends controls on German border, EU set to allow more Schengen exceptions
- 3Three Earth-like planets found outside the Solar System
- 4Palestinians condemn Eurovision Song Contest for flag ban
- 5Rebels launch surprise attack on Aleppo – Syrian state TV
Latest world news
Political turmoil on the horizon in Turkey?
Donald Trump is set to be the Republican US presidential candidate
Syrian army announces 48-hour ‘regime of calm’ in Aleppo
Fires threaten to engulf Canadian city
Migrants in Idomeni react angrily to idea of visa-free Schengen travel for Turkey
Wires > News
- 01:26 CET Cuba scrambles to keep pace with U.S.-fueled tourism boom
- 01:25 CET Ageing Thailand takes toll on indebted households
- 22:50 CET Turkish ruling party preparing to replace PM Davutoglu – officials
- 21:09 CET Merkel says working for U.S.-EU trade deal this year
- 21:06 CET ‘Three Amigos’ Obama, Trudeau, Pena Nieto to meet June 29
- 19:14 CET Russia arrests groups for planning attacks in Moscow region -…
- 18:55 CET U.S., allies to do more to combat Islamic State – Carter
- 18:52 CET ‘Nasty’ wildfire spurs evacuation of 88,000 in Canadian city