A COUNCIL has removed some meat products from school kitchens and other catering premises until investigations into horse meat tests are complete.
• School’s supplier recalls lasagne from other customer due to horsemeat fears
• Council says move is being taken as “precaution”
Renfrewshire Council said it was taking the step as a “precaution” after one of its suppliers recalled lasagne produced for another customer in order to test it for horse DNA. No horse meat has been discovered in products supplied to the council.
A council spokesman said: “One of our suppliers, the Brakes Group, has found horse DNA in lasagne produced for another customer. An investigation is under way.
“No horse DNA has been found in any of the Brakes Group products supplied to Renfrewshire Council.
“While there is no risk to human health, we have removed some Brakes Group products from our catering premises as a precaution until the results of the investigation are known.”
There are 63 schools in Renfrewshire, including 49 primary schools.
Some beef products were withdrawn from restaurants and cafes in the House of Commons last week as they were supplied by Brakes.
A statement from the company said the first batch of tests have proved negative for horse meat.
The scandal came to light last month when the Food Safety Authority of Ireland announced the discovery of equine DNA in some beef burgers.
The Holyrood Environment Secretary said it could be a pivotal moment with positive consequences for consumers.
“The horse meat scandal has undermined consumer trust in some parts of the food industry,” Richard Lochhead told MSPs this week.
“But it may be a watershed moment in how people think about food, and that could end up being a good thing.
“There’s an absolute need for every step of the food chain to take responsibility for the food it produces and to ensure that Scottish consumers can have total confidence that what they buy is what it says on the label.”
Renfrewshire Council said its food suppliers are sourced through Scotland Excel, which deals with contracts on a national basis.
North Lanarkshire Council said it disposed of 20 portions of Brakes lasagne last week after they were recalled by the catering firm and it is carrying out further checks on supplies.
Other councils across the country have also tested products in the wake of the scandal.
Fife Council leader Alex Rowley said there is “no risk” of school meals in the region containing traces of horse meat while Tayside Contracts, which caters for schools across Dundee, Angus and Perth and Kinross, said there was “no evidence” to suggest its meals contained horse meat.
Borders Council said it has been assured by suppliers that they do not use any of the companies so far affected by the situation while Edinburgh City Council said it had checked school dinners and found no samples that caused concern.