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EU ministers look for better ways to trace processed meat, avoid horsemeat being sold as beef

  • Iulian Cazacut, he general manager of the Doly-Com abattoir, one of the two units checked by Romanian authorities in the horse meat scandal, shows product specification sheets for horse meat and beef, in the village of Roma, northern Romania, Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2013. On Monday, Romanian officials scrambled to defend two plants implicated in the scandal, saying the meat was properly declared and any fraud was committed elsewhere. (AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda)

    Iulian Cazacut, he general manager of the Doly-Com abattoir, one of the two units checked by Romanian authorities in the horse meat scandal, shows product specification sheets for horse meat and beef, in the village of Roma, northern Romania, Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2013. On Monday, Romanian officials scrambled to defend two plants implicated in the scandal, saying the meat was properly declared and any fraud was committed elsewhere. (AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda)  (The Associated Press)

  • Workers handle meat at the Doly-Com abattoir, one of the two units checked by Romanian authorities in the horse meat scandal, in the village of Roma, northern Romania, Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2013. On Monday, Romanian officials scrambled to defend two plants implicated in the scandal, saying the meat was properly declared and any fraud was committed elsewhere. (AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda)

    Workers handle meat at the Doly-Com abattoir, one of the two units checked by Romanian authorities in the horse meat scandal, in the village of Roma, northern Romania, Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2013. On Monday, Romanian officials scrambled to defend two plants implicated in the scandal, saying the meat was properly declared and any fraud was committed elsewhere. (AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda)  (The Associated Press)

European Union ministers are looking at better ways to trace processed food across the continent and eliminate fraud amid a widening food scandal in which horsemeat was sold as beef to unwitting consumers.

Wednesday's emergency meeting at EU headquarters included nations most affected by the horsemeat scandal. Those are Britain, Ireland, France, Romania, Poland, Luxembourg and Sweden.

The ministers were eager for answers and aimed to make sure the 27-nation bloc would put better checks on processed food in place.

The ministers said so far the discovery of horsemeat sold as beef did not raise any consumer health issues, only a suspicion of fraud.

In Britain and Ireland there is great sensitivity about eating horse, but that does not exist in other EU nations like France and Belgium.