Czech inspectors find horsemeat in IKEA meatballs

Czech inspectors find horsemeat in IKEA meatballs

Czech inspectors find horsemeat in IKEA meatballs

Updated 26 February 2013, 9:56 AEST

IKEA has stopped nearly all sales of meatballs at its furniture store cafeterias across Europe after tests in the Czech Republic showed some contained horsemeat.

IKEA has stopped nearly all sales of meatballs at its furniture store cafeterias across Europe after tests in the Czech Republic showed some contained horsemeat.

A European scandal erupted last month when tests in Ireland revealed some beef products contained horsemeat, triggering recalls of ready-made meals in several countries and damaging confidence in Europe's vast and complex food industry.

The Czech State Veterinary Administration reported its findings to the EU's Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed, it said in a statement.

The inspectors took samples for DNA tests in IKEA's store in the city of Brno from a product labelled as "beef and pork meatballs", the statement said.

Besides the Czech Republic, the batch containing horsemeat had also been on sale in Britain, Portugal, Netherlands, Belgium, Slovakia, Hungary, France, Italy, Spain, Greece, Cyprus and Ireland.

In response the world's number one furniture retailer said it was pulling all meatballs produced by its main supplier in Sweden from sale.

Speaking from Sweden, IKEA spokeswoman Ylva Magnusson said Australia was not affected by the action, as all meatballs sold in Australia are made locally.

Ms Magnusson said the Australian meatballs underwent routine checks recently, and the results are due shortly.

IKEA stores in the United States, Canada, Australia and Japan were unaffected as they too have other suppliers.

Reuters/ABC