An English slaughterhouse is to be investigated after authorities discovered approximately 2cm of spinal cord, which is Specified Risk Material (SRM), in two forequarters of beef from Over 30 Month (OTM) cattle.
However, the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD), which enforces the regulations in Northern Ireland on behalf of the FSA, revealed, the forequarters were from two OTM bovines that had been slaughtered on 14 December 2006 and had tested negative for BSE.
The breach was discovered at Vanstar Meats, a licensed cutting plant in Northern Ireland in a consignment of animals slaughtered in Britain. The spinal cord should have been removed at the slaughterhouse in England, F Drury and Son, prior to despatch to the cutting plant.
The Food Safety Authority said that the receiving plant was not responsible for the breach. The remainder of the consignment was checked and found to be free from SRM. The affected quarters were detained and subsequently destroyed. "Since the breach occurred at a plant in England, the MHS has launched a full investigation into the incident," added the FSA