MLC warns caterers

The Meat & Livestock Commission (MLC) is warning caterers that cutting corners when it comes to buying meat is detrimental and a potential threat to business.

The warning came after it was announced that McLaren Foods, a catering butcher has gone into administration and been fined for selling rancid meat transported in unhygienic conditions.

Although this is an isolated incident, MLC foodservice trade manager, Tony Goodger, was keen to make the point that all caterers should sit up and take notice.

He said: "McLaren Food's entry into administration and the story of rotten meat sold in rancid conditions is a cautionary tale showing what can happen when caterers drive prices down and down, rather than demanding higher standards. When it comes to meat, chefs and catering buyers should remember that best value isn't the cheapest - it's the safest.

"As a customer you have every right to make your own spot checks on suppliers. The best option is to buy assured meat that has been independently audited along the supply chain. Good catering butchers have nothing to hide but buying cheaper meat can lead to problems such as this."