Sir: My view on the Tesco meat cross-contamination results (thegrocer.co.uk, 25 September) is probably different to most in that I welcome them. This may seem odd as the results flag up issues that are of real concern in terms of the quality of what we are buying.
However, I write this for a number of reasons. I am convinced that the supply of all food ingredients and food stuffs themselves needs to be put under much more scrutiny, particularly when the supply chains are long and complex. It does appear to me that, post-Horsegate, Tesco are being good to their word and have really stepped up their testing programme.
Furthermore, when they find problems (as they did) they are being open and transparent about them. It also appears that they are thoroughly investigating what went wrong and very much pushing their supply base to step up their standards in terms of reducing cross-contamination.
These type of findings are what I had predicted would occur when the monitoring of the authenticity of what we purchase tightens substantially. These actions can only be good consumers, and we can only hope that right across retail and catering sectors similar tightening of the integrity of our food supply system is occurring.
Professor Chris Elliott, director, Institute for Global Food Security, Queen’s University Belfast