A West Norfolk butcher and abattoir is joining the fight against a European Parliament plan to weaken inspection plans in slaughter houses.
Julian Howard, who has shops in Gayton, West Newton and Heacham, opposes the new proposal to blunt rules which inspect pigs in slaughter houses.
Euro MP Richard Howitt met with Mr Howard at his West Newton shop, which is on the Sandringham estate, on Friday last week.
Mr Howitt is protesting against a European decision to end physical inspection of pig carcasses at a forthcoming vote.
The Labour Euro MP says the Government’s backing for the decision to weaken inspections, shows that the lessons of the horsemeat, BSE and e-coli crises not been learned.
A British Food Standards Agency study showed no significant decrease in contamination with visual only inspections, but a 53 per cent increase in carcasses contaminated by faeces going undetected.
Mr Howitt said: “Inspectors have told me that relying on visual-only inspections will mean cancerous abscesses, tuberculosis and lesions will be processed unseen into the food chain and will end up being eaten in sausages and pies.
“It is an unbelievable move in the wake of the horsemeat scandal and very disappointing that our Government has chosen to go along with it.
“If we don’t succeed in reversing the decision on pigs, it will quickly be extended to chickens and other farm animals. I’ve come to a respected Norfolk firm committed to the highest standards, to show that there are many in the meat industry itself who do not want to see quality compromised by what in reality is a cost-cutting measure.
“In every sense, this is a cut too far.”