Sweden to DNA test meat in supermarkets

Swedish authorities said Tuesday they would carry out DNA tests on meat in ready-made meals sold in supermarkets after frozen food giant Findus found horsemeat in its products.

A Findus beef lasagne frozen ready-made meal pictured on February 8, 2013. Swedish authorities said Tuesday they would carry out DNA tests on meat in ready-made meals sold in supermarkets after frozen food giant Findus found horsemeat in its products.

"We'll perform the tests on different products in the Swedish market that contain meat to see what they contain," said Peter Braadenmark, head of food control at Sweden's National Food Agency.

"We'll perform between 50 and 100 tests," he said, adding that the results were expected to be compiled by the end of March.

Products targeted by the agency included meatballs, hamburgers, minced meat and lasagne. Most inspections would take place in supermarkets, but the agency could also test food in schools and in hospital canteens, he said.

The agency performed similar tests last year after up to 20 tonnes of frozen meat labelled as beef turned out to be dyed pork.

Swedish retailers have removed six different brands of ready-to-eat lasagne meals from their shelves on suspicions that they contain horsemeat.

All six were made by Comigel, the French firm that produced the Findus lasagne that was found by Britain to contain up to 100 percent horsemeat. A leading catering firm, Martin & Servera, also withdrew 2.5 tonnes of lasagne, saying it had to be tested.

The Swedish subsidiary of Findus said Sunday it was preparing a lawsuit against Comigel over the scandal.

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Writer: AFP
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