Four tons of horse meat found in canned foods bought for Turkish navy in 2015: Minister

Four tons of horse meat found in canned foods bought for Turkish navy in 2015: Minister

ANKARA
Four tons of horse meat found in canned foods bought for Turkish navy in 2015: Minister

More than four tons of horse meat was found in canned foods bought for the Turkish Naval Forces Command in 2015, Defense Minister Nurettin Canikli has said.

The discovered meat was never served, Canikli stressed.

He was responding to a written parliamentary question from main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) Istanbul deputy Sezgin Tanrıkulu submitted to Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım, following allegations about the navy buying rotten meat and horse meat at the Gölcük Fleet Command in the northwestern province of Kocaeli.

Canikli said 12.5 tons of canned meat was bought for the naval forces in 2015 and horse meat was determined in 4.05 tons of it, prompting the ministry to cancel the deal with the food company and file a complaint on the issue.

“In order to meet the needs of the Naval Forces Command, an agreement was signed with a firm by the Defense Ministry for the purchase of 12.5 tons of canned meat on Oct. 8, 2015. Some 8,950 kilograms of the purchased meat were consumed without any problems. But a particular smell was determined for the remaining 5,550 kilograms when their cans were opened, thus it was requested for the contractor company to change the products,” Canikli said on Dec. 20.

He added that the new meat supplied by the company was sent for serological tests in the northwestern province of Bursa.

“Upon the analyses, it was determined that 4,050 kilograms of the meat contained horse meat,” Canikli said.

Saying that necessary procedures were launched in order for the company to compensate for the damage and to ban the firm from participating in future public tenders, Canikli noted that a complaint was filed to the Gölcük Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office against the company over fraud and collusive tendering.

“In line with the terms of agreement, it’s out of question to serve food products for consumption without obtaining their physical and laboratory examination results. Within this scope, the tins including horse meat were never served for navy personnel’s consumption,” he added.

Canikli also said the cans containing horse meat are currently being kept in depots of the Gölcük Fleet Command in order to be delivered to the Kocaeli Provincial Agriculture Directorate to be destroyed.

“All of the supply contracts signed with the company - 24 in total - were canceled on Sept. 10,” he added.

horse meat, canned food, turkish military, soldiers