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Schools PR Headache : Minced beef sold at up to 240 schools in Leicestershire is pulled from the menu

Less than a 1% trace of horse DNA was found in the minced beef

Minced beef has been removed from all school canteens in Leicestershire after tests showed it contained traces of horse DNA.

In a message to parents , Leicestershire County Council said it was taking “prudent action” but insisted there is “no health risk”. “The vast majority of food we supply is Red Tractor assured and we will continue to regularly seek assurances from our school food suppliers to ensure that they comply with legislation,” it said. “The council only uses food produced within the UK but sought reassurances for two items which aren’t processed on site by the supplier.”

The second product tested by trading standards officers – a beef grill steak – was found to contain no horse DNA and will continue to be served in school canteens.

Leicestershire County Council supplies meals to 240 schools but has not yet confirmed how many canteens the minced beef was served in.

The Food Standards Agency has tested more than 5,400 products, although only 17 have been found to contain at least 1% horsemeat

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