Based on assumption, many people if given the option would likely choose to have their lasagne made with the standard “beef” ingredient rather than “horse”.
But, of course, it’s always nice to have choice where food is concerned and some people may be partial to a bit of horse for tea.
However, unwittingly eating a certain food type believing it to be something else is another matter.
The latest horsemeat debacle (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-21377601) opens an entirely new debate, leading us to question – how far can we ever truly trust that what we’re consuming is what we think it is?
Whilst many people are disgusted at the prospect of eating Black Beauty the real issue goes far deeper than this. The concern is that, as consumers, we put our wholehearted trust into food manufacturers and supermarkets. We have faith that the ingredient and nutritional information provided is correct, and we like to be able to choose and feel that we’re in control over what goes into our bodies. A few minor discrepancies and most of us would make an allowance, however, to replace a main ingredient with a completely different type of animal is diabolical.
With one of the messages to consumers being “not to worry”, how far can we apply this when something as important as our freedom of choice is taken away from us?
Findus is a house-hold name and (was) a well-respected brand, and it will be interesting to see how the company fares. However, even if it does manage to show jump back from this major PR crisis, it certainly leaves a bad (and unforgettable) taste in the mouth.
One thing for certain though is the irony of the situation which proves that whilst the modern day consumer seemingly has multiple options and a plethora of choice, we’re actually unknowingly more controlled than ever.
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