It has also been agreed that initial tests will focus on the areas of most concern, but that all products will be tested as part of the programme and all results reported.
Defra and the FSA have demanded more authenticity tests on all beef products, such as beefburgers, meatballs and lasagne, and for industry to provide the results to the FSA.
At today’s meeting there was also a commitment for the FSA and the food industry to work together to identify the best points in the supply chain to test as part of the ongoing programme and to publish regular reports of test results. The FSA will meet again with industry representatives on Monday to agree this and other technical points.
The FSA remains the lead investigating authority and there is currently no police investigation. However, the FSA and police are working closely and the police will be involved if the evidence suggests a level of criminality within the UK that the police should deal with. The most recent information regarding Aldi and Findus does suggest gross negligence or possibly criminality, and we are working closely with the French authorities as part of the investigation. Europol are also aware of our investigations.