A new report from Republic of Ireland food safety monitors has shown some burgers sold in Britain and Ireland that were billed as beef contained a mouthful of horse meat.
The horse DNA — found in almost one-third in one sample, according to Ireland state broadcaster RTE — is a surprise not only for the burger consumer but also, apparently, for those providing the product.
Horse? How'd that get in there?
The Food Safety Authority of Ireland has said there's no health risk associated with the agency's findings. The FSAI analyzed 27 beef products and found that 10 contained horse DNA and 23 contained pig DNA. The packages of burgers were available in five supermarkets, RTE reported. The products have been removed from store shelves.
The state broadcaster said Wednesday morning that the investigation was continuing. Raymond Ellard of the FSAI told the news outlet that the mix-up was likely accidental. He said the agency saw no evidence "of some widespread subterfuge ... where somebody's trying to substitute horse meat for beef."
Meanwhile, RTE asked shoppers in Galway, Ireland, what they thought of the hidden horse meat.
One shopper said Europe had dined on horse meat for years and it didn't really bother him.
"I've probably eaten worse," said another man. "Some places you don't know what you're getting."
One female shopper, however, said it "sounds despicable."