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Labour MP slams government for slow response on horsemeat

Report by Sarah Kerr, Video by Matt Blake

Mary Creagh MP said the government has been "well behind the curve" on the horsemeat scandal.

"It's nearly four weeks since the Irish government first alerted us to the problem of horse meat in burgers. The government ordered these 10 million burgers to be withdrawn but the supermarkets don't know what to do with them," Creagh said.

This comes after an alarming rise in incidents of retailers recalling their beef products after tests revealed the presence of horse meat in them. The government has raised fears that more meat contamination cases could be still to come as further tests are being carried out.

Britain's Food Standards Agency has demanded a more stringent meat testing programme from retailers after a UK-based company said its lasagne contained meat from horses.

British Food Minister David Heath called for a probe. "We got to find out if there's criminality involved," he said.

Food safety experts say horse DNA poses no added health risks to consumers, but the discovery has raised concerns about the food supply chain and the ability to trace meat ingredients.

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