At the time of writing the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) is compiling an Opinion on the scientific and technological difference between mechanically separated meat (MSM) using high-pressure techniques and low-pressure techniques. The technology and innovation of low-pressure recovery has overtaken the definition of MSM in the legislation and now produces a fine mince-like meat that is quite unlike what we all picture when MSM is mentioned. This Opinion, expected at the end of March, will be the scientific basis for future legislation on this subject.
Under the existing legislation both methods of production are categorised as MSM, and subject to the requirements laid down in the Food Hygiene Regulations. Prominent among these is that MSM must be declared on the label and that it cannot be counted towards the meat content. MSM is an everyday product and UK poultry producers fully comply with the legislation surrounding it, and hope that other Member States are equally diligent.
Consumers should have no concerns when it comes to buying high quality British poultry products. Recent reports raise an important issue for British producers in terms of a level playing field for EU legislation that currently exists. Labels accurately reflect the composition of our products so consumers can have every confidence in what they are buying. We encourage consumers to trust in British produce and look for the Red Tractor logo.