Response to the horsemeat scandal


Key Words : avoid a new horse meat scandal

21 August 2013         

Diane Dodds (NI)

What steps have been taken at EU level to ensure that the horsemeat scandal of February 2013 does not happen again, and to rebuild confidence in beef?

2 October 2013

Answer given by Mr Borg on behalf of the Commission

The Commission would refer the Honourable Member to its answers to written questions E‐4275/2013 and E-4773/2013(1).

Regarding official controls, the Commission has recently adopted a proposal to review existing rules(2). The proposal requires Member States to include unannounced official controls to detect fraud, calls for better cooperation in tackling cross-border non-compliances, and allows the Commission to adopt mandatory coordinated control plans in cases such as the horsemeat scandal. The principles governing sanctions in cases of intentional violations have also been reinforced, to ensure that where financial penalties are applied for intentional violations of agri-food chain rules, the fines are set at a level which is higher than the expected gain stemming from those violations.

(2) COM(2013)265 final ; 2013/0140 (COD) of 6 May 2013.