Meat supplier fined for mislabelling

16th May 2014 - Fine Cut

Here at Fine Cut, we understanding the importance of labelling effectively, correctly and accurately. Now, the need to get labelling right has been highlighted by news that meat wholesaler Douglas Willis Ltd is being fined for not doing so.

According to the BBC, the firm has been slapped with a £15,000 punishment for keeping meat in its freezers that was considerably past its use-by date. It will also be required to settle £12,000 in legal costs.

This follows the company being told in 2011 that there was no case to be answered in light of the events, as the frozen meat would not have posed a threat to the health of the general public. However, the Supreme Court ordered a retrial on account that the prosecution did not necessarily need to prove that the meat posed a direct hazard; only that it had been mislabelled, which was indeed the case.

The gravity of the breach is all the more hard-hitting given that some of the produce was out of date by a matter of years and the company was in fact completely unable to prove when exactly some of it had gone into the freezers in the first place.

Caerphilly Magistrates' Court heard how its action could have led to "hazardous" produce entering the food chain, which may have had lasting and far-reaching consequences for consumers.

As a result, the company admitted to 12 counts of mislabelling offences, resulting in the hefty fine.

If this tale wasn't evidence enough of the seriousness of mislabelling produce, the topic has been splashed across the media lately in light of the halal-labelling issue. The subject has proved controversial after it was revealed consumers may have been dished up halal meat without realising this was the case, with many believing this sort of information should have been made widely available.

Whatever your opinion on the halal issue, there is no denying that clear, concise, accurate and honest labelling has to be the way forward. Give us a call today to discuss how we can help you to achieve all of these goals in line with your labelling needs.

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