House Notes with Martin Horwood: The horsemeat scandal
THE 'horse burger' scandal has exposed the extraordinary nature of modern food production.
The European Union's criminal investigation agency Europol usually tracks down terrorists, drug runners and other cross-border gangsters, but they're now targeting criminal involvement in a chain of meat processors and subcontractors stretching from the UK to Ireland, the Netherlands, France, Luxembourg, Romania and Cyprus.
Crooks apart, there's a growing sense that we actually had no idea what was in our processed meals and can't really trust the labelling.
It's a good opportunity to promote home cooking, the British-only red tractor sign, local butchers (like Lanes or Robin Jenkins in the Bath Road, Tivoli Butchers or Peter Jefferies on the Cirencester Road) or even the reliable and environmentally-friendly option: vegetarianism.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, May 26 2013
One poll suggests 31 per cent of us have suddenly stopped eating ready-meals and 53 per cent want to ban all meat imports "until we can be sure of their origin".
I'm slightly sceptical. Unless lifestyles transform overnight and everyone pays much more for their food, multi-national processing is here to stay.
European ministers don't just need to call the cops in, they need to make sure this borderless industry operates to high, transparent standards and the labelling is true.
Highlights of the Week:
Friday: Met with our thriving local United Nations Association branch to discuss everything from climate change to the arms trade. Celebrated the UN's sometimes flawed, but ultimately irreplaceable, role in bringing nations together to discuss our common problems.
Monday: Report back from the European Union council at which ministers agreed a welcome cut in the EU's budget. It still needs approval by our Euro MPs, but just shows what can be done by building alliances instead of confrontation.
Tuesday: The annual parliamentary pancake race. MPs battle lords and journalists – and promote charity Rehab's excellent training and support for disabled and vulnerable people. MPs triumph again.
Thursday: Circuitous route back home from Parliament via the Eastleigh by-election campaign. Lib Dem Mike Thornton is campaigning to save green spaces from overdevelopment there too: another ally in the Commons if he wins.