When is a Meat Pie Not a Meat Pie?
It’s a very good question when is a meat pie not a meat pie? The obvious answer is quite correct in this instance, when it’s got no meat. But the reason behind this is still a bit of a mystery, at least if you live in Iceland.
You may recall the horse meat scandal of a little while back. If not, let me refresh your memory. Routine DNA testing of beef burgers rather shockingly revealed the presence of horse DNA. To be fair there are lots of things that go into a beef burger, but one of the things that don’t generally go in is a horse. Follow up testing in both Ireland and Germany confirmed that yes, Black Beauty seems to have fallen into the burger machine.
Obviously further investigations followed and, rather than writing this off as an isolated incident, it uncovered widespread use of horse meat in a wide range of products. Burgers, meatballs, all manner of spaghetti bolognese, beef(ish) lasagne, pretty much anything beefy had a good chance of containing Shergar.
Products from fast food outlets as well as supermarket chains were affected and the problem was reported across pretty much the whole of Europe. It was a scandal of international proportions. Eventually governments got on top of the problem, there were factory closures and several arrests and the whole industry was eventually cleaned up.
But the one oddity was Iceland. Although not directly involved in they decided to perform testing as well just to be on the safe. As expected they discovered no sign whatsoever of horse DNA in any of their products. But rather curiously, in one hugely popular brand of beef pie, they also failed to find any beef. Or any horse, or pig or goat or other form of animal meat you care to mention. No meat at all in a popular meat pie, just a load of vegetable matter.
So the “Great European Horse Meat Scandal” actually uncovered the “Great Icelandic Complete Lack of Any Meat Scandal”. Investigations are continuing. Anyone care for a Sprout Pie?