Burger King has stopped sourcing food from Irish supplier ABP’s Silvercrest plant, which is ridden in horsemeat scandal, and has even dumped beefburgers from the supplier despite the latter claiming them to be uncontaminated. The fast food chain has given out strict orders to its staff to pack up Whoppers and Angus burgers and make them unavailable for customers. Burger King has said that the removal of the burgers might lead to shortage of burgers in its restaurants.
Last week, Burger King was stricken by horsemeat scandal after tests revealed that ABP’s Silvercrest meat processing plant in Ireland and Dalepak Hambleton plant in Yorkshire had supplied burgers with traces of horsemeat in them to supermarkets. One product was even classified as 29% horse. Most supermarkets hurried to take off the burgers from their shelves but Burger King remained unnerved by the revelations. But over the weekend, Burger King managers were ordered to remove the Silvercrest burgers from sale. As a “voluntary and precautionary measure”, Burger King then said that it is switching to a different supplier for its British and Irish restaurants.
ABF Food Group, which is one of Europe’s biggest suppliers and processors, claimed that the burgers supplied to Burger King were stored and processed separately, and moreover there is no evidence to prove the contamination of those burgers. Despite the claims, ABF has stopped the production at its Silvercrest plant after the revelations emerged in the tests.
Last week, as supermarkets received the appalling results of the tests, each took turns to apologise to customers for selling the contaminated burgers and immediately withdrew the burgers off their shelves. Tesco apologised through full-page adverts in many newspapers, while Aldi, Lidl and Iceland also followed suit by removing the horsemeat-contained frozen burgers.
Sainsbury’s, Asda and the Co-op also removed some frozen products as a precautionary measure. Ten million burgers have been withdrawn from supermarket shelves across Ireland and the UK in the wake of the horsemeat scandal.