It is considered "highly likely" that US fastfood giant McDonald's was among the unsuspecting buyers of mislabelled beef products sold by Starzen. Japanese food industry experts said the problem could become exacerbated in coming weeks as more firms admit to malpractice. Late last week Starzen admitted relabelling cheap beef and pork products as premium cuts to gain premium prices. The fraud has been going on since summer 2000, so many of the country's major meat buyers are likely to have fallen victim over the last 18 months.