Asda boss' horsemeat shock

The boss of Asda today described his "shock" as revelations of the horsemeat contamination scandal broke, vowing to leave "no stone unturned" to address problems in the supply chain.

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Brits 'buying less meat' due to horsemeat scandal

The discovery of horsemeat in products sold as beef has shocked many consumers into buying less meat, a new survey by research company Consumer Intelligence.

An online poll of more than 2,200 adults found that the scandal has significantly altered people's shopping habits:

  • A fifth of adults said they had started buying less meat as a result of the scandal
  • 65% of respondents said they trusted food labels less as a result
  • 60% of adults surveyed said they would buy meat from their local butchers
  • 25% said they would buy more joints, chops or steaks instead of processed meat

Supermarket chiefs at Government horsemeat summit

A meeting between the Environment Secretary and representatives of leading supermarkets and food retail trade bodies has started at Defra's Westminster offices. Representatives from the following supermarkets and trade bodies are present:

  • Tesco
  • Asda
  • Sainsbury's
  • Morrisons
  • The Institute of Grocery Distribution
  • The Food and Drink Federation

Owen Paterson is expected to press those attending to do more to restore public trust in food following the scandal.

More: Downing Streets says the food industry must restore public confidence in meat

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Labour: 'The buck has to stop with Defra'

Supermarket sales have taken a battering from the recent horsemeat scandal.

Shadow Environment Minister Huw Irranca-Davies told Daybreak that the responsibility of solving the issue, lies with Defra.

He said the responsibility for food provenance goes right across the supply chain, and added that it was not "right" the Government had been "pointing their finger at the supermarkets" for blame.

Read: Iceland sparks row with council over horsemeat scandal

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Supermarkets to spell out plan to restore confidence

The Government will ask Britain's leading supermarkets to spell out today how they plan to restore consumer confidence following the horsemeat scandal.

Tesco supermarket in Vauxhall, London
Tesco supermarket in Vauxhall, London Credit: Press Association

Food retailers and trade bodies will meet the Environment Secretary Owen Paterson in Westminster this afternoon. It comes after some ministers said they were "frustrated" with the initial response from supermarkets when it emerged horsemeat had been found in some products.

Iceland blames councils for driving down food standards

The boss of Iceland has blamed local councils for driving down food standards and contributing to the horsemeat scandal.

Today, allegations that the government knew horsemeat entered the food chain as far back as 2011 have emerged, and the government says it is investigating.

Meanwhile, farmers' markets are reporting a hike in sales, as shoppers increasingly want to know where their meat has come from.

ITV News deputy political editor Chris Ship reports:

Read: Horsemeat 'warning ignored'.

Iceland chief: Cheap food is driven by local authorities

Malcolm Walker, chief executive of Iceland, said retailers are not to blame for the horsemeat scandal, as food prices are being driven down by local authorities who operate an "invisible market" catering to schools, care homes and hospitals.

He said the horsemeat scandal has been "hyped out of all proportion."

"Cheap food doesn't come from supermarkets it is driven by local authorities trying to get their prices down. "

More: Local authorities hit back at Iceland horsemeat attack

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