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The fraud of the expired hams: Freeze and falsify labels to sell past meat

Discovered in a few weeks thousands of kilos of meat products in bad condition with altered labelling in several provinces of Spain

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The fraud of the expired hams: Freeze and falsify labels to sell past meat

The national police and Civil guard have seized in three operations in a few weeks hundreds of tonnes of hams and or meat products expired, and even in bad condition, that companies or people involved pretended — in some cases y had Gotten — put back on market, after forging labels or precincts. Sources of Guardia Civil and Ministry of Health maintain that, for moment, se are independent operations that have coincided in close dates. In any case, it is still investigating if y could have connection.

More information
  • Destroyed hundreds of tons of hams and sausages expired or rotten
  • Intervened 50 tons of expired meat that was distributed in schools and restaurants of Majorca

The problem is no longer, like years ago, that products of medium or low quality are made pass by gourmet and Pata Negra — a more or less habitual swindle that producers of Iberian tried to track with standard of quality of 2014 and seals that indicate race and method Or feeding of animal. In se cases fraud is that products whose date of preferential consumption or expiration has expired and that should be destroyed are returned to market after falsifying labels, which must include all data that allow traceability of meat.

The last of seizures occurred this weekend in Fuente Vaqueros (Granada), after some agents gave stop to a refrigerated truck in a routine control. When inspecting cargo, y detected meat products and accompanied driver to ir destination, a ship where a lot of 10,700 hams and sausages expired and in poor condition of conservation that ir owners were moving of site were stored. In inspection of ship, "anomalies" were discovered in labelling, indications that some labels had been tampered with, which makes it suspicious that intention was to put those products back on market, according to Civil guard sources. Now it is about finding out where those products had come from, which have already been incinerated.

Meat seized in anor operation in a company of Majorca in May, also expired and with labels altered

The same sources say that for now no connection has been found or operation that in March discovered more than 30,000 kilos of frozen meat expired in some ships of Majorca waiting to be distributed in schools, hotels and restaurants; Nor with confiscation, destruction and immobilization of hundreds of tonnes of hams, sausages and or expired meat products and even in a state of rot in several ships of Valencian Community and Extremadura. Sources of Valencian Ministry of Health indicate that re are five industries whose activity has been suspended and in nine ors have been carried out "special controls". Product has been removed in se companies and in points of sale. This case gave rise to a health alert of Spanish agency of consumption, food security and Nutrition (Aecosan), Ministry of Health, which warned against consumption of products from various brands: Ham Bodega Alto Aitana, Ham Bodega Sierra Gorda, Air Mariola, Serranía de Ameta, El Galán, Hams Croval, Don Enrique and Oro la Ermita.

Despite coincidence of cases in a few weeks, neir Guardia Civil, nor Ministry of Health, nor employer ANICE have evidence that re has been a rebound of this type of fraud. For its part, employers of meat industry ANICE admits its "concern", although it refuses to talk about plots. "They are criminals as y can be in any sector," he says.

How can you put expired product in circulation?

How is it possible that a game of expired meat, which according to regulations must be destroyed by incineration, arrives at hands of someone who wants to reintroduce it to market? Sources of meat industry explain that owner of product is one who must ensure that merchandise comes out of circulation. That is to say, eir producer if he has not sold it, or, where appropriate, distributor who has not come to sell purchased merchandise.

In any case, expiration date or preferential consumption must be specified on product label. In cases uncovered in recent weeks, "anomalies" have been detected in labelling, which can be an indication of falsification to put defective merchandise back into circulation.

Regulation 1169/2011 of EU regulates rules on labelling of foodstuffs and establishes information that must appear in m: from expiration date to origin of product or presence of allergens.

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