Meatballs are a traditional part of Swedish cuisine, and are consumed in large quantities by customers in Ikea’s in-store cafeterias with mashed potato and cranberry sauce. They are also offered on sale frozen in Ikea’s in-store food shops for customers to take home.
problem was initially found in the Czech Republic Ikea stores, it seems that meatballs from the same batch were sold in several European countries, including the UK, France and Portugal, according to a spokesperson for the company.
The announcement came on Monday after the Czech State Veterinary Administration found horsemeat
in 1kg (2.2lb) packs of meatballs which were manufactured in Sweden and then shipped to Ikea stores in the Czech Republic.
In total, 760kg (1,675lb) of the affected meatballs were intercepted and stopped from reaching the Czech stores. Ikea posted a message on its Swedish Facebook page to the effect that it was halting all sales of meatballs at its stores in that country.
announcement advised that meatballs from the same, affected batch had also been sent to Ikea stores in Belgium, Cyprus, France, Greece, Hungary, Netherlands, Portugal, the Republic of Ireland, Slovakia, Spain and the UK.
Reportedly Ikea insists that in-house tests run two weeks ago had found no horsemeat, but they did say that new tests will now be carried out.
"We do not tolerate any other ingredients than the ones stipulated in our recipes or specifications, secured through set standards, certifications and product analysis by accredited laboratories," a statement said.
Meanwhile the Czech State Veterinary Administration has said that horsemeat has also been found in beef burgers imported from Poland.
The scandal further continues as the Swiss company, Nestlé has advised that it had found horse DNA in meat from the Spanish supplier, Servocar. On Monday, the Spanish agriculture ministry announced that traces of horsemeat had been found in beef pasta meals produced by Nestlé brands.
According to a statement on Nestlé's company website, the Swiss company is withdrawing six "La Cocinera" products and one "Buitoni" product from shops in Spain. The company has also halted all deliveries from the meat supplier, Servocar.
These further discoveries of horsemeat and horse DNA come as EU agriculture ministers are holding talks which are expected to focus on the growing horsemeat scandal.
According to Nestlé, they are testing their products across the board, just a week after announcing that they are withdrawing two types of beef pasta meals from supermarkets in Italy and Spain, supplied by a company in Germany, H J Schypke.
A Nestlé spokesman has apparently told the BBC
that this is not an indication that the problem is widespread across the company, but that "we are testing like mad".