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Horsemeat scandal 'should have been picked up in UK'

Public service trade union Unison said the presence of horse DNA in beef burgers should have been picked up by British authorities, but Government cuts to food trading and meat hygiene services mean vital safety checks are being limited.

The union said the scandal demonstrated the industry was not fit to self-regulate and criticised the "dramatic falls in levels of activity" across the food safety industry, including:

  • 29% drop in new prosecutions
  • 265 fall in total number of schedule inspections
  • 24% fall in total number of visits for enforcement purposes