The Food Standards Agency is investigating two consignments of
beef in Northern Ireland and Eastbourne in unrelated breaches of
Agency officials in Northern Ireland are today examining part of
a consignment of fore and hind quarters of beef from the Republic
of Ireland, which appears to contain spinal cord or residual spinal
In Eastbourne, imported German beef was found to contain one hindquarter
with spinal cord marked as fit for human consumption. The breach
came to light yesterday (1st February) in one of 217 hindquarters
imported into the UK through Dover. The consignment was exported
from Germany by Fleisch-Versand Heinz Gausepohl from Bakum. Accompanying
documentation stated that the beef was from animals under 30 months
The discovery was made at a meat cutting plant in Eastbourne, Sussex
- the same plant which, on Monday this week, received a German hindquarter
containing two inches of spinal cord. These two consignments were
from different sources in Germany.
The Agency instituted 100% inspection of all imported German beef
carcasses at licenced plants on Monday (29th January).
Notes For Readers
- The decision to inspect all imported German beef carcasses is
a temporary, risk-based measure which applies only to German imports.
- UK imports of bovine carcass meat from Germany between September
1999 and August 2000 totalled 1,337 tonnes (excluding offal).
- The UK's domestic Over Thirty Month rule, introduced in 1996,
applies to imported beef as well as home-produced beef. It means
that meat from cattle over the age of 30 months is prohibited
from entering the human food chain (with the exception of cattle
registered under the Beef Assurance Scheme, and meat imports from
14 countries which are either BSE-free or at very low risk of
BREACHES OF BSE CONTROLS