Meat will be back on the menus for school dinners in Kilburn and Queen’s Park following contamination issue
- Credit: Archant
Tests carried out by Westminster Council had found pork in halal sausages
Meat will be back on the menu for school dinners in Westminster after they were withdrawn when traces of pork were discovered in halal sausages, it has been announced today.
Pupils have been given fish and vegetarian dishes since March after tests carried out by Westminster City Council in light of the horsemeat scandal detected the contamination.
All meat products supplied by their contractor Chartwells were pulled, affecting some schools in Kilburn and Queen’s Park, and an investigation was launched.
In a letter sent out to schools today, Karen Tyerman, director for commissioning for children’s services said: “We expect meat to be back on the school menu in a phased programme.
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“This is later than we originally stated as it has taken longer than expected to source new suppliers who meet our new criteria as well as being able to supply food in the large quantities we require.”
According to the results, one sample of halal chicken sausages which may have been supplied to 19 schools and nurseries showed traces of pork.
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Under Islamic dietary rules Muslims can only eat halal foods and are strictly forbidden from eating any pork products.
Tests also showed a sample of non-halal lean mince beef supplied to a further 17 schools and nurseries contained traces of pork and lamb.
The council have insisted they will not use the supplier who provided the products at the centre of the controversy although Chartwells, which is part of the Compass Group, will remain contracted to provide the meals.
They also claim to have introduced what is believed to be the most stringent school meal checks in the country.
Andrew Christie, Tri-borough director of children’s services, said: “It has not been an easy task to find quality meat in the quantities required. But we now believe this has been achieved, so we are pleased to say it will be coming back.
“And for further peace of mind, both for parents, children and teachers we will continue to carry out rigorous testing so we never see a repeat of this unfortunate episode.”