The future of APB Food Group’s Silvercrest processing facility in Ireland seems uncertain after the group was forced to close the site when it was identified as one of the sources of frozen beef burgers that contained horse DNA.

The facility was shuttered after burgers from the site tested positive for horse DNA in random tests conducted by Ireland’s food standards watchdog. Customers including Tesco, Aldi and The Co-operative Group dropped Silvercrest last week after the link was made.

The horse meat ingredient – possibly a filler agent – is believed to have originated in Poland. According to Tesco, the Polish firm identified by the Irish Food Safety Authority was not on Tesco’s list of approved suppliers.

A spokesperson for ABP said: “The Silvercrest site remains closed, but we will continue to honour our current contracts. We do not feel it is appropriate to comment further at this stage.”

However, Unite the union, has voiced concerns that the loss of business cold threaten jobs at ABP and requested that management keep employees informed on possible casualties.

“Unite has members across different operating units and locations within ABP. Our request of group management is that they keep all staff up to date with the developing situation,” a spokesperson told just-food. “We anticipate a meeting with management on this basis in the coming week.”

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