Cut to pig meat checks poses danger for British banger

UNISON, the union for meat inspectors, is warning that a Brussels vote to cut pig meat checks could see cysts and abscesses make their way into British bangers.

Currently, symptoms of disease or ill-health in animals killed for food are physically removed by inspectors, independent of the meat producers. They stop cysts and abscesses being processed into food for sale.

A decision taken in Brussels this week means that pig meat checks will now only be visual. A range of unpleasant symptoms of illness in pigs will be processed into food unchecked and unnoticed.

Ben Priestley, UNISON national officer, said: “British bangers flavoured with cysts or abscesses can now make their way onto your plate. Weakening pig checks is a recipe for disaster. The horse meat scandal clearly proved that light-touch food regulation does not work.

“Consumers rely on the government to protect them and keep their food safe – they have been badly let down by the weakening of these important rules.”