HORSEMEAT: ABP Food Group files lawsuit against Polish supplier

By Michelle Russell | 13 September 2013

ABP says it has always insisted it never knowingly provided beef that contained equine DNA

ABP says it has always insisted it never knowingly provided beef that contained equine DNA

ABP Food Group has filed a lawsuit against a Polish meat supplier for breach of contract, the latest fall-out from the horsemeat contamination saga.

The Irish firm said it commenced High Court proceedings against Food Service yesterday (12 September), claiming the firm supplied its Silvercrest Foods subsidiary with beef containing equine DNA.

"ABP has always insisted that it never knowingly provided beef that contained equine DNA to any of its customers," said Paul Finnerty, chief executive of ABP Group. "This was confirmed in the findings of the Department of Agriculture, Food & the Marine's report of March 2013.

"ABP's initial focus was to implement systems to ensure this cannot reoccur and establish the source of certain contaminated product. We have done that now and our current focus is on seeking redress against certain suppliers. We have already resolved matters with Norwest and will now pursue our claim against Food Service through the courts."

ABP this week accepted a financial settlement from UK-based Norwest Foods for Norwest supplying Silvercrest with beef containing equine DNA.

In a statement, Norwest Foods confirmed it had agreed a settlement with ABP.

"Norwest acknowledges that it may have unknowingly and unwittingly supplied contaminated beef products contrary to the terms of Norwest's contract with ABP. Norwest wishes to apologise to ABP for any inconvenience or concerns caused by this supply."

Details of the financial settlement, however, are subject to a confidentiality agreement.

ABP was at the centre of the horsemeat scandal earlier this year when it emerged retailers in the UK and Ireland were selling frozen beef burgers that contained horse meat. One of the suppliers at the centre of the scandal was Silvercrest, owned at the time by ABP. It has since been sold to Irish-based Kepak Group.

Last month, Irish meat trader McAdam Food Products filed a lawsuit against ABP for alleged defamation at the time of the horsemeat scandal.

Sectors: Meat & poultry

Companies: ABP Food Group

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