Crisis Management LabAldi : The Horsemeat ScandalThis project is talking about “Aldi”, a chain of supermarket storesthat was involved in the horsemeat scandal, which was revealed tothe public in early 2013. At that time, foods advertised as containingbeef were found to contain undeclared horsemeat, as much as 100%of the meat content in some cases. Although, horsemeat is notharmful to health, the particular horses were previously drugged andtheir meat contained dangerous painkillers for humans, such asphenylbutazone. Many countries were affected by the scandal, suchas France, the U.K , Romania, Netherlands and Cyprus. Right afterthe scandal, “Aldi” proceeded to tests about the meat and said thatthey feel very angry and let down by their Frenchsuppliers, “Comigel”. Unsurprisingly, the sales dropped, but despitethe scare, shoppers had just switched to different products and thesupermarket didn’t lose costumers.
The LabelChain of supermarket stores that was includedin the large catalog of food supplier brandsthat are involved in the horsemeat scandal thatwas revealed to the public in January 2013.
The scandal• The 2013 meat adulteration scandal is stillongoing in Europe; foods advertised ascontaining beef were found to containundeclared horse meat, as much as 100% ofthe meat content in some cases, and otherundeclared meats, such as pork. The issuecame to light on 15 January 2013, when it wasreported that horse DNA had been discoveredin frozen beefburgers sold in several Irish andBritish supermarkets. While horse meat is notharmful to health and is eaten in manycountries, it is considered a taboo food in manycountries including the UK and Ireland, inaddition to being a lower-cost ingredient thanbeef.
The scandal• The Food Safety Authority of Ireland says beefburgerswith traces of equine DNA, including one product classedas 29% horse, are being supplied to supermarkets bySilvercrest Foods in Ireland and Dalepak Hambleton inYorkshire, subsidiaries of the ABP Food Group.• Ten million burgers are taken off the shelves, byretailers including Tesco, Lidl, Aldi, Iceland and DunnesStores.• The story may now involve as many as 16 Europeancountries. In response to the growing evidencefor widespread mislabelling, the EU HealthCommissioner Tonio Borg has now urged all EU memberstates to implement random DNA testing ofprocessed beef products, for a three-month periodbeginning March 1.
More like an Economical scandal The issue is economic rather thannutritional. People eat meat because theyenjoy it – they enjoy the texture and theflavour. Often people become accustomedto the flavour of the meat they eat, sohorse meat may taste different, possibly“gamey”, but it’s easy to becomeaccustomed to this. Horse meat isgenerally very lean but otherwisenutritionally similar to beef or sheep. It’sa good source of protein, vitamins,minerals (especially iron) and healthyfatty acids (omega-3).
Than a health issue The human body responds differently to suchdrugs (painkillers) compared to horses, we getinto dangerous territory for human health. The substance causing the most concernis phenylbutazone, an anti-inflammatory druggiven to horses for the treatment of lameness,pain and fever. It’s no longer used to treathumans and is not supposed to enter the foodchain because it may cause a range of sideeffects. Some of these are quite serious, such asaplastic anaemia (bone marrow failure) in somepeople. But authorities in the United Kingdomhave declared the illegal horse meat in the foodsafe to eat.
The suppliers involved The Aldi beef goulash is made my Germanmanufacturer Dreistern-Konserven ,whilethe cucina ravioli are made my BLM alsofrom Germany.In a statemen Dreistensaid the goulash was safe and had beenwithdrawn as a precaution only. It waspossible the traces of horse DNA that hadbeen found into the product throughcross-contamination at slaughterhousesor in transport containers, it suggested.“We strongly regret that –despite ourconstant quality control checks- thisincident occurred.”, the company said .
Countries affected and reaction PARIS/LONDON (Reuters) - The French andBritish governments promised on Saturday topunish those found responsible for sellinghorsemeat in beef products at the heart of agrowing scandal that started in Britain but isquickly spreading to France. French Consumer Affairs Minister Benoit Hamonsaid an investigation had found that thehorsemeat had originated in Romania, althoughthere werelinks with French, Dutch and Cypriotfirms and a factory in Luxembourg.
Countries affected and reaction British environment minister Owen Paterson saidmore cases of contaminated food could emerge asBritish retailers conducted tests forhorsemeat onprocessed beef products. The scandal threatensto affectconsumer confidence in Europes giantfood industry, with pressure rising forgreaterchecks.The British unit of frozen foods groupFindus began a recall this week of itsbeef lasagnefrom retailers on advice from its French supplier,Comigel, overconcerns that some packs containedhigh levels of horsemeat. Findus France said it too had recalled lasagne andtwo other products afterdiscovering that theyincluded horsemeat from Romania rather thanbeef from France as it had thought.
Countries affected and reactions Romanian authorities said they wouldpunish any violations if the reportswereconfirmed. "The agriculture ministry andfood safety authority will try to identify assoon as possible whether the (meat)comes from Romania. If legislation wasbroken, they will punish such practicesthat damage the image of the entireindustry," Romanias agriculture ministrysaid.
Countries affected and reactions Britains government is under pressure to appear ontop of the scandal, which comes less than a monthafter supermarket chain Tesco and fast food outletBurger King found horsemeat in beef burgers from anIrish supplier. Britons generally do not eat horsemeat,regarding its consumption as a quirk of Frenchappetites. However, the meat has also fallen out offavour with consumers in France. The Netherlands Food and Consumer Product SafetyAuthorityconfirmed on Tuesday February 12 that Dutchsupermarket chainsincluding PLUS and Boni hadwithdrawn Primafrost brand lasagne from their shelves,while its authenticity was investigated. A spokeswomansaid it was a preemptive measure.
Sales drop Sales of frozen burgers have plummeted byalmost half since the horsemeat contaminationscandal erupted, new retail figures show. Frozen ready meal sales have also fallen by 13per cent across the UK since the first evidence ofhorsemeat being used in beef products emergedin January. According to the latest grocery sharefigures from consumer experts KantarWorldpanel, sales of frozen burgers fell by 43 percent in the first five weeks of the horsemeatscandal. But the survey has also shown that, despite thescare, major supermarkets have not lostcustomers. Shoppers have simply switched todifferent products.
Functionhow the crisis was managed by thecompany after the outbreak (Whatdid they do)
CommunicationAnnouncements-Apologies-Statements Aldi announced its stores in the UK are recalling Today’sSpecial Frozen Beef Lasagna and Today’s Special FrozenSpaghetti Bolognese after finding horse meat in somesamples. Aldi said it tested and found the meat content ofsome of its beef lasagna products had between 30 percentand 100 percent horse meat. This is in addition to previousfindings that Findus frozen beef lasagna contained morethan 60 percent horse meat, and Tesco’s frozen beefburgers also tested positive for about 29 percent horsemeat. Aldi issued statements saying they are boosting testing onmeat products to protect customers, restore confidence andensure product quality. As supermarkets and suppliers prepare to meet to discussthe food labelling scandal, the company said it felt "angryand let down" by its French supplier Comigel, which alsoproduced the contaminated Findus beef lasagnes.
Communication An Aldi spokesman said: "Tests have beencompleted that show horse meat in the withdrawnproducts. In samples selected at random, testsdemonstrated that the withdrawn productscontained between 30% and 100% horse meat. Anyone who has bought the affected products canreceive a full refund, Aldi said.The companyadded that it would test the meals for theveterinary drug phenylbutazone, often referred toas "bute", but said it was "confident" the mealswere safe. "Aldi will not tolerate any supplier who fails tocomply with our requirements and we will supportany appropriate legal action taken against anysupplier that knowingly does wrong."