Monday, 11 February 2013

Mis selling Owen Paterson " Times is hard sir" for modern day Mrs Levetts and Mrs Mooneys

We like transparency in what we buy. Yet last week it appears that certain food brands did not pass the Ronseal test ( "It does exactly what it says on the tin")

  DNA analysis was used to identify the Findus Beef  Lasagne  miss sold - some samples the meat content of the product proved to be 100% horse .

The Newspapers have had a field day on this mis selling story particularly because journalists know rather more about food mis selling than the technical  details of mis selling financial services.

 After all mis selling of food products after all it was in Fleet street where the infamous fictional barber Sweeney Todd supplied Mrs Lovett with unspecified meat for her 'meat pies'.

 So the secretary of state for the Environment Owen Paterson held a summit with the heads of the meat industry both suppliers and buyers to discuss the horse meat scandal over the weekend
Tesco, Aldi and Findus have already withdrawn various products. One of the suppliers to these companies has been the French company Comigel.

Since Comigel also supplies the Benelux, Scandinavian and Eastern bloc supermarket chains this could be soon become a European wide problem. The paper trail has now tracked back down the supply chain to various agencies in Cyprus and the spotlight is currently on an abattoir in Roumania.

The fifty year old brand Findus took  action to withdraw product from the shelves. Their official statement reads:-

"At Findus UK we are committed to our customers and the quality of our products. Following a thorough investigation, Findus UK can confirm that testing of its beef lasagne, produced by a 3rd Party supplier and not by Findus, has revealed some product containing horse meat. As a precautionary measure on Monday we coordinated  full withdrawal of affected beef lasagne in the following sizes 320, 360 and 500g from all retailers. All other Findus products have been tested and all found not affected”

Ironically the body responsible for monitoring food for the country has the same letters as the regulator of the financial sector namely the FSA. Food standards Agency , Financial Services Agency soon to become the FCA

When a possible miss selling practise occurs in Food the action for decisions and Government is somewhat quicker to call the Companies to meet than in the Financial crisis.

Certainly the fear of customers radically changing their buying habits is of concern to the Meat industry especially the processed food sector.

One of the unintended consequences of Outsourcing to reduce costs is that as inspections and checks on safety are delegated to others the brand becomes that bit more fragile

The lyrics from the Sweeney Todd Musical have an uncomfortable  contemporary resonance about the supply chain in processed foods containing meat perhaps!

"Times is hard" as the song ends

You Tube Clip  of the full song from Sweeney Todd Demon Barber of Fleet street

...These are probably the worst pies in London!
I know why nobody cares to take them,
I should know,
I make them,
But good? No!
The worst pies in London,
Even that's polite!
The worst pies in London,
If you doubt it, take a bite!
Is that just disgusting?
You have to concede it!
It's nothing but crusting!
Here, drink this, you'll need it!
The worst pies in London...
And no wonder with the price of meat
What it is
When you get it
Thought I'd live to see the day
Men'd think it was a treat
Findin' poor
Wot are dyin' in the street!
Mrs. Mooney has a pie shop!
Does a business but I notice something weird.
Lately all her neighbors' cats have disappeared!
Have to hand it to her --
Wot I calls
Poppin' pussies into pies!
Wouldn't do in my shop!.....
...Times is hard sir, Times is hard

No comments:

Post a Comment