Citizen Reporter
1 minute read
24 Jul 2014
12:09 pm

Man in court over contaminated meat

Citizen Reporter

The owner of a prominent KwaZulu-Natal food company is due in the Ladysmith Magistrate’s Court today after being arrested for allegedly selling contaminated meat.

FILE PICTURE: Assorted meat on sale. Picture: Michel Bega

The 34-year-old unidentified business owner will face two charges related to selling contaminated meat products and processing food in an unhygienic space, according to the Ladysmith Gazette.

It had been reported that about 493kg of contaminated processed meat was seized on the premises on Friday, during an inspection. The meat had been found to be “unfit for human consumption”.

Police could not confirm which areas in the province had been serviced by the unidentified food company.

A meat scandal rocked the country last year, after it was revealed that popular supermarkets including PicknPay, Shoprite, Fruit and Veg City, Woolworths and Spar had been identified as stocking incorrectly labelled meat products.

A University of Stellenbosch study recently found that nearly 60% of 139 products tested contained ingredients which were not listed on their labels, including donkey, water buffalo, goat and pork.

In terms of the Consumer Protection Act, it was found to be an offence for anyone to alter, obscure, falsify, remove or omit a displayed price, labelling or trade description without authority.

Punishment included fines of up to R10 million or 10 years in prison.

The latest food safety scandal involved the Shanghai government shutting down a factory of US food provider OSI Group for selling out-of-date meat to restaurant giants including McDonald’s and KFC.

Last year, China detained hundreds of people for food safety crimes, including selling rat and fox meat disguised as beef and mutton, following a three-month crackdown, according to reports.