To be clear: Burger King (BKW) says there horse meat in their hamburgers. And just to make sure, Burger King tells Bloomberg Businessweek, which plans to test its beef burgers foreign DNA, even on horseback, pork and lamb.
The details of the DNA tests have not been resolved, and no timeline has been set for the implementation of the new procedures, says Diego Beamonte, president of Burger King, vice president of global quality. Burger King will test specifically for equine DNA after revelations that Silvercrest Food Processor food sold beef products containing horse meat to other retailers, including Tesco (TESO). Both companies have cut their ties with Silvercrest, and Tesco has also said he will do DNA testing on all meat products.
Burger King said in a statement that while the meat is sent to a laboratory in Germany earlier this month was negative for any equine DNA, Silvercrest decided to leave after learning this week that a small percentage of beef with the supplier had sold chain came from a non-approved provider in Poland, rather than the 100 percent beef patties British and Irish had committed to provide.
While samples taken from the plant contained DNA Silvercrest equine, Burger King says that this product was never sold at its restaurants.
Here is the full text of the statement of Burger King, as posted on PR Newswire:
We know that there has been concern about one of our former suppliers, Silvercrest Foods, and we want to thank our customers for their patience and understanding while we complete our investigation.
Wanted answers and so we did.
Earlier this month, we were notified that Silvercrest was under investigation for possible contamination of some products retail. At that time, were approved to supply 100% Irish and British meat pies for BURGER KING (R) restaurants in the UK, Ireland and Denmark.
Despite assurances that our products were not involved, we immediately launched our own internal investigation, which included evidence-installation inspection and scrutiny Silvercrest traceability records.
As confirmed on January 23, the transition of our restaurants in the UK, Ireland and Denmark to another of BURGER KING (R) approved providers in Germany and Italy as a precaution. These suppliers have provided DNA tests to confirm that their products are free of equine DNA. These are the products that are sold in restaurants today.
Following the conclusion of our investigation:
Our independent testing results on product DNA taken from BURGER KING (R) restaurants were negative for any equine DNA. Recently, however, four samples Silvercrest plant have shown the presence of very small trace levels equine DNA. This product was never sold to our restaurants.
In the past 36 hours, we have established that Silvercrest uses a small percentage of beef imported from a supplier not approved in Poland. They promised to deliver 100% beef patties and British & Irish have not. This is a clear violation of the specifications, and have ended our relationship with them.
Through our research, we have confirmed that unauthorized Polish company is the same company identified by the Department of Agriculture in Ireland as the source of pollution emission Silvercrest.
Beamonte Diego, Vice President of Global Quality, Burger King Corporation, said: “While the Food Safety Authority of Ireland has stated that this is not a food safety issue, we are deeply concerned by the results of our investigation and apologize to our clients, who trust us to source the highest quality 100% beef burgers. Our supplier has failed us and in turn we have failed. We are committed to ensuring that this does not happen again.
“We will devote ourselves to determine what lessons can be learned and what additional measures, including DNA testing and increased traceability controls, can be taken to ensure that we continue to offer quality products you expect from us.”
We remain committed to identifying suppliers that can produce 100% pure beef Irish and British for us to meet our high quality standards.