LETTERS From Angela Hewitt, East Cowes:
THERE has been a lot of talk in the national media about horse meat being found in commercial mass produced food products.
Many people are now confused as to what is safe to buy and I noticed, when I did my weekly shop, many products using beef, truly or otherwise, were left on the shelf.
It is beyond me the manufacturers, who have been using horse meat, cannot tell the difference between cow and horse flesh.
There will be significant differences — texture, sinews, colour and shape —even when it is diced.
This year, my recommendations in the IW Good Food Guide have put emphasis on the benefits of eating in restaurants owned and run by the chef.
A few eateries on the Island are now giving details of the provenance of their ingredients, local or otherwise.
Other eateries are paying lip-service, with just a couple of dishes, where the ingredients have good provenance but the rest of their menu is a let-down and they are still serving ready-made meals.
So, what do we know we can buy? Most of us have to rely on our trust in the suppliers’ honesty.
Some supermarkets claim they know the very farmer who produced their meat yet the same supermarkets have found, it seems, donkey DNA in their products and pork, when it should be beef.
So, who is to blame? On the face of it, a lot of people.
The government for not carrying out regular tests, the supermarkets for being sloppy, the manufacturers for not being able to recognise their ingredients and, well, we all know the rest, thanks to the press.