Food inspectors from East Suffolk Council have intercepted a quantity of meat that they suspect was illegally imported.
The haul, which included pork, eggs and other food products, was discovered in the back of a white van which had travelled to Lowestoft on a 1500 mile journey from Romania.
Eastern Daily Press report that the discovery of the products was made during a multi-agency spot check of vehicles on February 3 and, although the occupants of the vehicle claimed the contents were for personal use, weighing scales and a refrigerator were also found in the van. Officers were prepared to use powers to seize the meat, but the occupants agreed to voluntarily surrender the products.
East Suffolk Council cabinet member, Mary Rudd, said: “Since September, strict controls have restricted the movement of pork and pork products into Great Britain to help safeguard Britain’s pigs from the threat of African swine fever. This was great work by all involved to take this imported food out of circulation and remove any possible risks to animal and human health.”
Cllr Andrew Reid, Suffolk County Council cabinet member for public health and public protection echoed this, he said: “Food crime and fraud can take many forms, affecting food quality, authenticity and, most importantly, safety. In addition to posing a danger to public health, food crime undermines legitimate businesses and the food industry’s reputation.
“I applaud the work of East Suffolk Environmental Health and Suffolk Trading Standards in stopping these illegal and potentially harmful products, with the incident serving as a reminder of the threat of an outbreak of deadly African swine fever breaching the UK’s shores if care is not taken to stop this.”