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DNA Trace-Back Guarantees Meat Source

December 21, 2000

A DNA trace-back system developed by New Zealand researchers could provide British and European meat consumers with an assurance their product is from a BSE free-country. This system was developed in conjunction with Richmond Ltd, a major New Zealand meat exporter.

easiTrace™ is a scientific trace-back system developed by AgResearch New Zealand which allows meat retailers and consumers to trace their meat back to the processing plant, and the farm of origin, even if that is on the other side of the world.

UK meat retailers and wholesalers who are supplied by Richmond Ltd are already using the system to trace meat cuts back to the actual New Zealand farm it originated from. Food safety-conscious British consumers can therefore eat their meat with the assurance of the its origin and integrity.

Successful proof of concept trials have already been completed by British, Australian and other European meat processors.

Guaranteeing the country of origin gives meat consumers confidence of their meat source and offers food safety assurance. The scientific proof and documentation gives assurance that meat is sourced from a BSE-free country such as New Zealand.

Bruce Williams, executive director of Sastek Pty Ltd, which is marketing easiTrace™ in the UK and Europe, believes the DNA-based solution presents huge opportunities for guaranteed traceability to meat consumers world-wide.

“We can take DNA from a sample of meat from a UK supermarket, and say with certainty where the animal has come from. Having that absolute assurance of the country of origin, and even the farm of origin, provides a guaranteed product source, and the safety associated with that.”

“It means consumers can have a choice about meat purchases, knowing if they buy from a BSE-free source it has without doubt originated from that country,” he said.

For further information, please contact:

Jeff Scott, Bruce Williams
Sastek Europe + 44 7818421947 Sastek Australia +617 32687311

Aidan Coletta
Richmond Lonsdale +44 1732 740520

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