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"Do you think that's air you're breathing ?"

By Mr Grumpy - Thu 7th Feb 2013

The line, as most film lovers will know, was spoken by Morpheus in "The Matrix" as he tried to make Neo understand that nothing was actually as it seemed.

I'm not sure why, but that scene was the first thing that I thought of watching this evening's News about the UK's recent Horse burger scandal. It seems that the Food Standards Agency (FSA) have now found that "Findus Beef Lasagne" is in fact 60% Horse.

Following on from last month's revelation that Tesco's "Beef"burger was actually 29% Horse, it seems that every morsel of pre-packaged and overly processed food is being prodded and examined to see if everything is "as it should be".

Normally I pride myself on not caring about 90% of most things that are reported on the news, not having either enough education, patience or understanding (in some cases all 3) to grasp the point that some smug newsreader is trying to make.

On this occasion, it bothers me that most of the journos jumping on the bandwagon are missing some interesting question :

1.) What exactly is the issue ? - That Horsemeat has been found in food, or that Food that has been advertised as being one thing is actually something else ?

2.) Why has nobody actually addressed the fact that not only is Horsemeat fit for human consumption, but that it is actually quite popular in many European cultures ?

Personally, I would be more concerned if Meat of any description had been found in a veggie burger, and can't understand the moral difference between eating the flesh of one dead animal over that of another (and no, I'm not a Vegetarian).

I also hope that this encourages people to either buy their food from the local Butcher etc... rather than from abattoir sweepings, or prepare a meal themselves.

But what bothers me most is this : If the said Findus Lasagne is 60% Horse, and the Tesco burger is 29%, why is there the assumption that the remainder is Beef ?

Comment on this Blog

Give me a Horseburger over a Veggie Burger any day. As long as it tastes ok, ignorance is bliss.
Mickey Meathead - Tue, 12th Mar 2013
In light of yesterdays "Dog DNA" News, it seems my last paragraph was sadly prophetic.
Mr Grumpy - Sat, 9th Mar 2013
Whilst I agree that the Supermarkets and Major food producers have been highly negligent / fraudulent here, it is sending out a message that Horsemeat in general is not fit for human consumption. All that is going to happen here is that the Supermarkets are going to through Millions of Pounds of produce away 'pending an investigation' due to nothing more than mas media hysteria. The food is probably fine to eat - albeit not as advertised - and could have fed thousands of hungry people !
Tyler - Thu, 14th Feb 2013
You're arguing over the two very good points that Mr Grumpy raised here - is the issue that there is horsemeat in the food, or that the food is not what it was advertised as? Jennifer thinks the noise is about the horsemeat and Jo feels upset about the false advertising. I'm afraid that what Jennifer says tends to be true - there are many people who feel that eating horsemeat/rabbit etc is "eww" whereas its fairly common in other cultures! Limiting it to rich white people was perhaps a bit too much like fighting talk, but the point remains. If eating horsemeat doesn't freak you out, good for you, and you're 100% justified in wanting to know what's in the food you're buying.
Roy Gent - Sun, 10th Feb 2013
@Jennifer : Why "Rich" and "White" ? - What has one's colour or wage packet to do with the right of the induvidual to know the contents of the food which they have purchased ?
Jo Green - Sat, 9th Feb 2013
McDonalds seem to have been pretty sucessful in keeping their name out of the news at the moment. Wonder why that may be ?
Robster - Fri, 8th Feb 2013
OK, I do agree that in a civilized society, we should know what we are eating and that it has gone through a thorough inspection process. That being said, the best Cecina - usually cured cow leg, like the Spanish jamon or Italian prosciutto - I've ever had was horse meat paired with fantastic Toro red wine, in the Spanish village of the same name. Horse is actually supposed to be one of the healthiest and leanest meat - like guinea pig or rabbit, both of which many Anglos like to go "eww" to. This is just another rich, white people problem...
Jennifer K. Riggins - Fri, 8th Feb 2013

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