Horse DNA detected in Home Bargains and Quality Save canned sliced beef

The product, which was manufactured in Romania in January of this year, was supplied to Home Bargains and Quality Save stores in the UK

Horse DNA has been found in a batch of canned sliced beef on sale at two discount retail chains in the UK, the Food Standards Agency (FSA) said today.

The product, which was manufactured in Romania in January of this year, was supplied to Home Bargains and Quality Save stores in the UK.

In a statement the FSA said 320g packs of Food Hall Sliced Beef in Rich Gravy contained between 1% and 5% horse DNA.

The presence of equine DNA was detected during routine testing carried out by trading standards officers. However, the product tested negative for the drug phenylbutazone - known as 'bute'.

An FSA spokesman said: "The affected batch has been withdrawn from sale. If you have this product stored you are advised to return it to where you bought it. The affected batch has a best before date of January 2016 and a batch code of 13.04.C."

A spokeswoman for TJ Morris Ltd, who own Home Bargains, confirmed the product had been removed from sale.

"We work closely with our suppliers to ensure that our quality control is of the highest standard and extremely thorough. We are already liaising with this supplier to ensure that an even more robust process is in place moving forward," they said.

Horse meat contamination was initially revealed in January by officials in Ireland. A number of supermarket ready meal were found to contain horse DNA.

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