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Shoppers in Gloucester sticking with supermarkets despite the horse meat scandal

By The Citizen  |  Posted: February 12, 2013

  • Business on the up: Mark Carr and Cory Stoneman at Cam Family Butchers.

Comments (15)

SHOPPERS are being urged to Back our Butchers in the wake of the horsemeat scandal.

The Citizen's campaign comes off the back of several big-name food sellers becoming embroiled in the row, like Findus.

It has prompted Mark Carr, owner of Cam Family Butchers in Dursley, to put a 'No horsing around' sign outside his business. He said: "Our business has gone up 20 per cent, everyone is talking about it."

Gloucestershire County Council also revealed it has been asked by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) to carry out checks. A spokesman said: "We have been approached by the FSA, which is leading on this particular issue, and we will be working with it to answer people's concerns locally.

"We understand consumers' concerns about mislabelling of food and we will ensure that we keep them informed as further information becomes available, and take action as appropriate."

Shoppers on Gloucester's streets were reacting to the scandal, but many said they will need more convincing to head to the butcher.

Ash Pollard, 29, said: "I think people are over reacting to be honest, they will still be shopping at the supermarkets."

Mike Rentall, from Abbeydale, said: "I will still be getting my food from Morrisons, it's good stuff there and it is cheap."

Lauren Knight, 19, from Kingsholm, said: "I can understand why people might want to switch back to the butchers but I'll be shopping at supermarkets still."

Belinda Sprigg, 60, said: "I would eat horse meat, but I can see why people have trust issues now." Arron Carter, 19, said: "There is a massive trust issue now."

Christine Parkes, 66, said: "I lived in France for a few years and eating horse was normal over there, but I guess that isn't the issue here, it is more a trust thing now."

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  • Judas  |  February 12 2013, 6:44PM

    dontyaknow - The practice of injecting chicken with water and proteins is not illegal, as long as it is accurately labelled, if there is no label, I guess there is no injections. This applies to both supermarkets and butchers. Your comment "Supermarket cattle are poorly fed, poorly kept and stressed." - Do you have evidence of this? That is a serious accusation. I suppose this can be a bit of an unfair comparison "assume we are talking big 4 supermarkets here and a highly regarded local butcher". You are in effect comparing volume retailers with a quality butcher. I recall M&S advertising the hanging of their meats for 28 days although this does not fall into the category of the big 4. That would be a fair comparison with a highly regarded local butcher. Now what would the difference be again?

  • honslknjklyt  |  February 12 2013, 6:10PM

    I wouldn't buy meat from Asda, fresh, cooked meat or in their ready meals but never have complaints with Tesco. With local butchers we have no idea where their meat is from, any more than we know we supermarket meat is from, just the word of a more familiar face. There is good and bad in everybody. There are some brilliant butchers but also some bad. Years aside from when I tried the market, never again, since I went to a butchers. Asked for some diced pork, if I recall, it was mostly fat and I asked him to take the fat off, he did but still charged me the full amount that he was going to charge, prior to cutting it off. Was many years ago though.

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  • dontyaknow  |  February 12 2013, 6:01PM

    Judas, supermarket meat and Butchers meat do not come form the same carcass (assume we are talking big 4 supermarkets here and a highly regarded local butcher). Supermarket cattle are poorly fed, poorly kept and stressed. Supermarkets do not hang the meat, where as a decent butcher would hang it for 21 days. Supermarkets don't even store it correctly. Additionally, they even increase the weight of some meats (chicken breast is a prime example) by injecting it with water, so it shrinks when it cooks. In this case, not only do you end up with a substandard product, it works out more expensive as you end up with less cooked meat and the animals no doubt came from goodness knows where and suffered in poor conditions. People have every right to shop in supermarkets, but even for a week or 2, try a local butcher. Research them online as there are bad butchers, but a great one is invaluable. Perhaps I am biased towards them as I am within walking distance of 2 decent butchers, but I used to by all our meat from a supermarket, I still use supermarkets, but never again for meat. In terms of quality, there is no comparison, our local butchers wins every time.

  • Walker100  |  February 12 2013, 4:07PM

    Judas, I am with you on that 100%. So many times I see signs outside establishments proclaiming "Quality this...." or "Quality that....."! Erm, Quality needs to have an associated measure otherwise it is a pointless adjective. Are a "Quality Butchers" high quality or poor quality.....and anyway, who measured the proclaimer and said they were "Quality"?

  • Walker100  |  February 12 2013, 4:04PM

    Supernova1 said "lordigaga, while that might have been the case years ago, I can't agree that it is true today." I really wish that were true Supernova but when you can buy 50 sausages for £2 in supermarkets then it really does seem that price is king in many regards. When you examine that price, by the way, 50 sausages for £2, you are talking about 1lb of meat product for 32 pence. When you take into account the grower, the transport, the producer, and the seller are all making a profit on that 32 pence what the hell do you think goes into that sausage?

  • honslknjklyt  |  February 12 2013, 1:36PM

    Local butchers rely on the fact that people trust them more. The only local butchers in Gloucester city centre aside from teh one by sainsburys, is the one in the market. I went ther once, right miserable old git, minced beef was more expensive than supermarket minced steak (british minced steak). I have no worries about shopping at supermarkets and wil continue to do so. A lot of meat is labelled, on tins too of its origin. Simply by British - no horse in there.

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  • NibNobs  |  February 12 2013, 1:25PM

    Where can you go to a butchers and not get ripped off with town centre parking charges? I only go to Asda & Tesco because I can get everything in one visit and not have to pay to park. The supermarkets will no doubt hit back from this scandal by having more 'real' in-store butchers like most Morrison's do (and Waitrose) and the high street butchers will be in even more danger of going out of business as they won't be able to say "supermarkets only have pre-packed rubbish"

  • Judas  |  February 12 2013, 11:38AM

    Maybe someone can enlighten me on the definition of 'quality' that seems to be used in preferring local butchers to supermarkets? In my mind, beef for example, comes from cattle. Is the rump better on a local butchers counter or a supermarket shelf, afterall, it could be from the same carcass. Are 'sub-standard' cattle reared for supermarkets and prime cattle solely for local butchers? We know the answer. In my opinion, the main factors are: how it is cut, how it is prepared and how it is cooked.

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  • valhalla2010  |  February 12 2013, 11:26AM

    I would trust my local butcher more than a supermarket wrt food provenance and overall quality. The problem is that I don't have a local butcher (that I know of). I am not over concerned because I never buy burgers or ready meals- I always make my own, they taste soooo much better. Get a slow cooker, spend the weekend making stew/ casserole, chillie-con-carne or curry to your heart's content and then freeze it down in bags or tupperware.

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  • QuedgeleyGuy  |  February 12 2013, 11:17AM

    Maybe if Horse Meat was sold openly the problem would end. I'd buy it if it competed with beef prices.