February 25, 2013 - 18:44 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - Swedish furniture giant Ikea was drawn into Europe's widening food labeling scandal Monday, February 25 as authorities said they had detected horse meat in frozen meatballs labeled as beef and pork and sold in 13 countries, according to AP.
The Czech State Veterinary Administration said that horse meat was found in one-kilogram packs of frozen meatballs made in Sweden and shipped to the Czech Republic for sale in Ikea stores there. A total of 1,675 pounds of the meatballs were stopped from reaching the shelves.
Ikea spokeswoman Ylva Magnusson said meatballs from the same batch had gone out to Slovakia, Hungary, France, Britain, Portugal, the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Italy, Greece, Cyprus and Ireland. Magnusson said meatballs from that batch were taken off the shelves in Ikea stores in all those countries. Other shipments of meatballs were not affected, she added.
However, the company's Swedish branch announced on its Facebook page that it won't sell or serve any meatballs at its stores in Sweden out of concern for "potential worries among our customers."
The Czech authority also announced Monday that it found horse meat in beef burgers imported from Poland during random tests of food products.
Spanish authorities, meanwhile, announced that traces of horse meat were found in a beef cannelloni product by one of the brands of Nestle, a Switzerland-based food giant. The Agriculture Ministry said it was a case of fraudulent labeling but represented no health threat.