ABP’s response to equine DNA findings to date

"We are talking about DNA testing and DNA will pick up molecules and something in the air," Larry Goodman stated in a Financial Times interview published on 18 January
"We are talking about DNA testing and DNA will pick up molecules and something in the air," Larry Goodman stated in a Financial Times interview published on 18 January

As the government's investigation into the source of the 29.1% equine DNA found in a Tesco Value Beef Burger continues, ShelfLife outlines supplier ABP and owner Larry Goodman's response so far



24 January 2013

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Statement- ABP Food Group- 23.01.2013

A spokesperson for ABP Food Group said:

"The company stated earlier this week that it is concentrating its efforts on its internal investigations and it remains entirely focussed on that task. It has previously stated that it is not commenting further, pending the conclusion of those investigations."


Statement – ABP Food Group – 20.01.13

"As previously stated, Silvercrest Foods and the ABP Food Group are co-operating fully with the competent authorities in the investigation. The company is investigating all possible sources of horse DNA contamination. At this stage the investigations remain centred on third party ingredient suppliers from the Continent.

ABP Food Group has never knowingly bought or processed horse meat and the company is still shocked by a finding of 29% equine DNA in one burger sampled in the FSAI survey.

The company responded to the issue – which was first brought to its attention on the evening of Monday 14th January – by initiating an immediate product withdrawal, commencing its own internal investigations and by suspending production pending the outcome of the investigations.

As the company’s immediate focus is on the investigations it will not be commenting further pending their conclusion."

Larry Goodman’s comments in a Financial Times interview, published 18 January

In what was described as "his first interview in 25 years", owner of the ABP Food Group, Larry Goodman told The Financial Times that he questioned the the validity of DNA tests on his burgers by regulators and criticised what he called tabloid sensationalisation of the issue.

"We are talking about DNA testing and DNA will pick up molecules and something in the air," Goodman said in the interview which was published last Friday, 18 January.

"I would not be surprised if there was not cross-contamination of various species if one were to do DNA testing," he added.

When asked about the media coverage, the beef baron said he was "disgusted with some of the things that I see," and insisted that despite coming under intense pressure from retailers on cost, that his company did not use inferior products.

He said his company had never bought or traded in horse meat and he suspected the contamination came from a hamburger filler product sourced from a supplier on the Continent. "We have been let down," he claimed.

For immediate release – 17 January 2013

Statement – ABP Food Group

To date, ABP Food Group investigations have centred around two third party EU suppliers.

Following receipt of this evening’s Irish Department of Agriculture results, we believe that we have established the source of the contaminated material to one of these suppliers. However, because equine DNA has been found in finished products tested this week, we have decided that the responsible course of action is to suspend all production at the Silvercrest plant in County Monaghan with immediate effect.

This week’s production has not been released from the plant.

During the suspension of production, all staff will continue to be paid, and we will be working with the relevant authorities, management and supervisory team to complete our investigation.

We will continue to communicate with our customers and suppliers over the coming days.


Immediate Release – 15 January 2013

Statement – Silvercrest Foods

"The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) has identified traces of porcine and equine DNA in frozen beef burgers produced in the Republic of Ireland.

The FSAI stress that there is no food safety issue with these products. However, as they could be misleading to consumers, the FSAI has issued a press release.

A spokesperson for Silvercrest Foods, a subsidiary of ABP Foods, said:

"This issue affects a number of burger manufacturing companies in Ireland, including Silvercrest Foods.

Following tests carried out by the Food Safety Authority of Ireland, we have been alerted to frozen beef burgers which contain porcine and equine DNA.

Although the products pose no risk to public health, Silvercrest has taken immediate action to isolate, withdraw and replace all suspect product. Silvercrest has never purchased or traded in equine product and has launched a full-scale investigation into two continental European third party suppliers who are the suspected source of the product in question."




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