Only an independent investigation into the horse meat controversy will “reassure customers” and “restore confidence” in Irish meat processing nationally and internationally.
This is the view of Fianna Fáil agriculture spokesperson and Galway West TD Éamon Ó Cuív, who is calling for an independent investigation into the horse meat controversy.
His call follows the “disturbing” revelations of further findings of equine DNA in products used by two manufacturers in Monaghan and Newry.
The Connemara based TD has also accused Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney of showing a “lack of leadership” on the issue.
“This controversy has rumbled on for almost three months now but we seem further than ever from the root cause,” said Dep Ó Cuív. “The Minister does not appear to be on top of this situation and the longer it drags on, the harder it will be to restore confidence.”
Dep Ó Cuív said the situation demands an independent investigation in order to “reassure customers that Ireland is dealing with this in the strongest possible way”.
Meanwhile Galway’s Labour senator Lorraine Higgins has called on the Government to “adopt a ruthless approach” and “vigorously pursue those responsible, with criminal charges if necessary” for allowing the horsemeat contamination.
“Evidence is emerging that horse-meat is deliberately being supplied into the beef burger manufacturing industry,” she said. “If this is proven, I fully expect the Gardaí to pursue the wrong-doers with criminal charges.”
She was also critical of commentators who have “tried to turn this issue into a discussion about why eating horse is not a tradition here, but that misses the point. This not about taste, it’s about misleading the public