Spoiled meat ‘sold in Istanbul’
Dinçer Gökçe ISTANBUL / Hürriyet
A recent criminal suit including officials from Meat & Fish Enterprises ignites concerns on local food security. Hürriyet photoSpoiled and diseased meat has entered the market for sale via Turkey’s state-owned Meat & Fish Enterprise (EBK), according to allegations in an indictment filed by a prosecutor in the northwestern province of Kırklareli.
A probe was launched against 15 people, including EBK officials, on Dec. 13 by the chief public prosecutor’s office in Lüleburgaz, a district of Kırklareli, upon receiving information claiming some meat produced by the EBK had been stolen, and healthy EBK animals had been replaced with diseased animals. The inquiry has revealed some interesting findings about local food security. Some healthy meat and animals from the EBK were replaced with spoiled meat and diseased animals, the indictment said. Some meat from diseased and dead animals was put on the market in Istanbul, and some of it was made into sausage and kokoreç (roasted sheep intestines), according to the indictment.
A report from an inspection carried out as part of the EBK probe also revealed fraud in EBK meat tenders. Local officials from the Jordanian firm Hijazi and Ghosheh, which has won several EBK meat tenders, delivered less than the agreed number of animals, the indictment said, adding that this and other wrongdoings had been committed with the knowledge of some EBK officials.
The prosecutor indicted suspects in the case on charges of organized crime, selling spoiled food, forgery of documents, and harming the public interest. The first hearing is scheduled for Sept. 28.