Fast food chain Burger King has ended their deal with Silvercrest since the company is being investigated by the Food Safety Authority of Ireland as horse DNA was found in some of its beef burgers.
RTE reports that Burger King’s parting of ways with Silvercrest was both voluntary and precautionary. The fast food chain will now turn to other Burger King-approved meat suppliers for their UK and Ireland locations.
Further, Burger King is looking to ensure that their alternate suppliers will use only 100 percent pure British or Irish beef.
The chain also advised that due to the switch, some products may not be readily available at all of their locations temporarily, and apologized for any inconveniences.
ABP Foods, of which Silvercrest is a subsidiary, declined to comment, saying only that it is concentrating its efforts on its internal investigations and remains entirely focused on that task.
Gabriel Gilmartin, president of the Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers' Association, said Burger King's decision to change its meat supplier was "a worrying development, which emphasises the need for the industry to learn the lessons from the horse DNA controversy."
Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney said that they are now in the process of putting a very complex jigsaw together in terms of finding a common ingredient among the Irish national products and products that were imported.
So far, Irish ingredients have tested negative for horse DNA, and teams are tracing leads that connect the DNA to imported ingredients from Spain and or the Netherlands.
Fianna Fáil's Éamon Ó Cuív said Minister Coveney should go before the Oireachtas Committee on Agriculture to explain what he does know about horse meat ending up in beef burgers produced in Ireland.
Speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, Ó Cuív said: "If there are certain facts that have not yet been established, well we need to know what they are, why they are not established and when they'll be established."