An ingredient from Poland is the likely source of the horse DNA found to have contaminated some of the beef burgers manufactured by a plant in Ireland.
Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney told a news conference that the ingredient from Poland had been used at the Silvercrest plant in Monaghan for the past year and was likely to have been behind the contamination.
Positive test results from three burgers produced at the plant since January contained a common ingredient from Poland, he said.
The product was beef filler, made up of fat cuts and trims.
Coveney said while earlier test results had shown trace levels of equine DNA in imported raw material, latest testing showed 4.1 per cent of the raw material in question comprised equine DNA.
“The investigation has therefore established a direct correlation between burgers in which a high level of equine DNA was detected and this raw material product.”
The minister said he understood that in future, all meat products produced at the plant will be sourced only from Ireland and Britain.