Sandwell Council horsemeat fear takes beef off schools menu

Beef being put through a mincer Welsh Bros Food withdrew some minced beef products on Wednesday

Beef has been removed from school menus and meals-on-wheels dishes in Sandwell after a supplier said products could include traces of horsemeat.

Newport-based Welsh Bros Food contacted Sandwell Council on Wednesday to report one batch of frozen minced beef had "potentially tested positive".

It is not known if any of this batch reached Sandwell, the council said.

The firm said it had issued a notice withdrawing frozen minced beef produced from 12 December to 17 January.

Councillor Paul Moore, responsible for health at the local authority, said previous tests had revealed no issues and the authority had been given firm assurances from the company in recent weeks.

"Following this latest information we have decided as a precaution to temporarily withdraw all beef products sourced from Welsh Bros Foods from our schools, meals-on-wheels service and other council catering outlets," he said.

The council said it was checking if the batch, thought to contain above 1% horsemeat, had been supplied to Sandwell.

It said the local trading standards team would also carry out its own tests.

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