Whitbread burger given the OK

A WHITBREAD BURGER that tested positive for horse DNA above the 1% threshold has now been shown to contain less than 1% horse meat.


On March 26th, the Food Standards Agency (FSA) advised that a Whitbread burger had tested positive for horse DNA above 1%.


The FSA has now received further test results that have confirmed the level of DNA to be under the reporting threshold.


However, Whitbread will remain on the list of brands named on the FSA’s consumer advice webpage as it has reported other positive results as part of the testing carried out by the food industry.


In February, Whitbread announced that it will be taking a “wide range of actions” following the discovery of horse meat in some of its products.


A statement by the leisure group, which owns chains including Beefeater and Brewers Fayre, outlined how it will be establishing a new system to trace processed meats from field to fork. Independent batch testing of processed meats will also be extended and a requirement for suppliers to have certification for all processed meat products will be introduced.

Chief executive Andy Harrison has also hinted that some food businesses were failing to respond to the crisis with a number of major retailers and wholesalers remaining absent from the Food Standard Agency’s list of firms to have submitted test results.


The purpose of the sampling programme is to get an accurate picture of the potential scale of contamination of beef products on high streets and in the catering supply chain across the UK.


The findings of the survey, carried out by 28 local authorities on behalf of the FSA, are consistent with those from the tests carried out by the food industry. The results confirm that the contamination and adulteration of beef products, with horse or pork meat, has been limited to a relatively small number of products.