Horsemeat: ASDA reveals horse DNA in frozen mince

Asda has confirmed that a beef mince product removed from its shelves as a precaution in January has tested positive for horse DNA.

The supermarket said that its frozen Chosen By You Lean Beef Mince (454g), which was removed on 17 January, contained horsemeat above the FSA testing threshold of 1%.

It added that it had now completed the tests required by the Food Standards Agency (FSA), but had decided to go “above and beyond” by testing a further 269 products for horsemeat. Of a total of 641 products tested, 99% of products have been given the all clear, Asda said.

It confirmed that only two products - the Chosen By You Lean Beef Mince and Chilled Beef Bolognese Sauce, which was found to contain 4.8% horse DNA - had tested positive for horse DNA above the 1% threshold. However, it added that four burger products and a canned corned beef product had tested positive for trace elements of horse DNA.

The retailer also said that three frozen pasta products products had tested positive for pork DNA above the 1% threshold, and a frozen steak sandwich product had tested positive for traces of lamb DNA.

Asda has withdrawn 43 further products “as a precuation”, including two pizza products which were pulled from shelves this week. The supermarket said it had taken a “belt and braces approach”, removing products from shelves when it had “any concerns”.