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Horse DNA Found in Burger King Whoppers

Update Date: Feb 01, 2013 01:22 PM EST

Fast food chain Burger King has admitted that some of its burgers and Whoppers sold in the U.K and Ireland were tainted with horsemeat.

The chain said that some patties made in the plant of one of its processors in Ireland contained traces of horse DNA.

In a statement, Burger King said "four samples recently taken from the Silvercrest plant (in Ireland) have shown the presence of very small trace levels of equine DNA."

"Within the last 36 hours, we have established that Silvercrest used a small percentage of beef imported from a non-approved supplier in Poland. They promised to deliver 100 percent British & Irish beef patties and have not done so. This is a clear violation of our specifications, and we have terminated our relationship with them," the company added.

However, the giant fast food chain said that the horsemeat patties never reached the company's restaurants.

"While the Food Safety Authority of Ireland has stated that this is not a food safety issue, we are deeply troubled by the findings," said Burger King vice president for global quality Diego Beamonte said, according to USA Today.

"Our supplier has failed us and in turn we have failed you," The Guardian. He said that Burger King is "deeply troubled" by the findings.

Burger King said that the samples of burgers tested from its restaurants showed no trace of horse meet.

There has been an ongoing controversy about horse DNA being found in British and Irish beef after it was revealed that supermarket chains Tesco, Lidl, Aldi and Iceland have all been selling beef patties containing traces of horse meet. According to the Daily Mail, the fast food chain had previously given "absolute assurances" that its products were not involved after one if its suppliers was under investigation for selling beef products potentially tainted with horsemeat.

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