The Food Standards Agency has decided to extend its investigations to other 2 Sisters poultry plants in England and Wales. This follows an initial inspection by the FSA, working with the local authority, into the food hygiene and labelling concerns raised by ITN/Guardian on 28 September at the 2 Sisters Food Group’s West Bromwich plant.
This inspection has not identified food safety issues on these premises, but it highlighted issues requiring management attention, for example in relation to some aspects of staff training and stock control. We are working with the major retailers supplied by 2 Sisters, as well as reviewing information from various other sources. We have also written formally to ITN and the Guardian to request the full evidence taken by their undercover investigation, such as the footage taken and witness interview transcripts to assist our investigation.
Heather Hancock, Chairman of the Food Standards Agency said: “Consumers deserve food they can trust, and can be reassured that we take allegations of poor practice very seriously. Although our initial inspection found no risk to public health, we are broadening our investigations until we are satisfied that this is truly the case. I’m disappointed that ITN and the Guardian have not yet provided the information that they committed to share and I would urge anyone who has evidence to share to bring it directly to us.”
2 Sisters Food Group last week closed the West Midlands plant at the centre of allegations of poor hygiene and misdating of products, and said it would be closed for ‘as long as it takes’ to retrain its staff.