The Horse and a Dirty Trick, 15 Feb. 2013
by Andreas Schwarz
The horse has fallen out of favour. Ever since the animal started galloping through the media as a horsemeat scandal, horsemeat has been regarded as yuck! [...]
This debate should be reined in before it bolts away. Horses have been eaten for a long time, sometimes fitting the poor man’s budget, sometimes as a delicacy. A prohibition by Pope Gregory III halted consumption already in the Middle Ages. Up until today, Rhine Sauerbraten [marinated pot roast] in Germany, Mostbröckli [corned, smoked and dried meat] in Switzerland, Dürre [a boiled sausage] and Pferdeleberkäs’ [horsemeat loaf] from Pepi-Hacker [coll. expression for horsemeat butcher] in Austria have remained delicious treats.
Some people only like horses at all when they’re in a bread roll.
The Snag of the EU, 15 Feb. 2013
by Reinhard Göweil
BSE, rotten meat – and now horsemeat declared as beef. The EU wants to be close to its citizens – this would be easily possible when it comes to food control and safety. Even buying cheap products, the consumer still wants to get what is written on the packaging.
One would therefore expect the EU Commission to take this subject very seriously. But what happens instead? Meat-and-bone meal is once more permitted as animal feed, first in fish farming, and then for chickens and pigs. That doesn’t just spoil one’s appetite, but takes away one’s faith in a responsible EU. [...]
So, no one seemed to notice that Romanian horsemeat was re-labelled into EU-Beef. The profit is incredible; beef is three to four times as expensive as horsemeat. While sellers and processors are making money, the EU turns out to be a pigsty. [...]
There is nothing to be said against an organised, Europe-wide food industry. Why shouldn’t the frozen lasagne of a French brand have Romanian meat in it? For that purpose there have to be consistent regulations throughout Europe.[...] The national authorities have only one thing in common: no idea what’s going on. The horsemeat scandal is a feast for opponents of the European Union, served up by EU-advocates.
Food Scandal a Blessing for Horsemeat Butchers, 17 Feb. 2013
by Eva Winroither
For some people a food scandal can be a real blessing. Margarete Gumprecht, horsemeat butcher in Vienna, has almost no time for a chat. The telephone is constantly ringing. The branches in Vienna are reporting shortfalls, as are some restaurants. [...]
"Horsemeat belongs to Vienna just like the Sachertorte", says Gumprecht, who praises above all the health advantages: Horse meat is particularly lean, and richer in iron and vitamins than beef.
The butcher delivers[...] about five tons of horsemeat products to their clients every week. Horsemeat has a long tradition, especially in the Eastern parts of the country. In Vienna alone, the company has about 400 clients (grocery stores and Würstelstände). [...]