Nearly a third of Britons are disillusioned with supermarkets following the horse-meat scandal of a year ago, a poll commissioned for a morning news show suggests.
The One Poll was conducted on behalf of ITV’s Daybreak show as it looked back on the horse-meat scandal that eventually enveloped much of Europe.
The poll found that almost a third of those surveyed no longer had faith in supermarkets following the discovery of horse DNA in processed beef products.
More than a third of consumers now spent extra time checking the contents of their food, the poll revealed.
The horse-meat issue first arose when the state food watchdog in Ireland found horse DNA in some beef products in mid-January.
Subsequent testing across Europe resulted in tens of millions of processed beef products being pulled from supermarket freezers.
Many countries pushed for higher levels of testing by the the food industry and instituted more rigorous state-backed testing.
The scandal highlighted the complexities of the food chain and its vulnerability to rogue meat traders.
But Barbara Gallani, from the Food and Drink Federation, told Daybreak that British consumers had access to “perhaps the safest food in the world”.
The Government had acknowledged some vulnerabilities where consumers and businesses were exposed, which were being dealt with, she said.
“The changes that have been put in place are quite wide-ranging; first of all there are more announced audits in businesses. The testing regime has been reviewed, informed by risk assessments that are now based on a much broader range of data,” she told the news programme.
“What we have learned is a much better sharing of data and intelligence, to make sure we know where the risks are.”