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Priest: Give tainted meat products to poor

Feb. 23, 2013 at 5:19 PM

BERLIN, Feb. 23 (UPI) -- A German priest and a government official said food tainted with horse meat should be given to the poor rather than discarded.

The scandal over beef products that contain horse meat has spread to Italy, Belgium, France and Liechtenstein. The German consumer affairs ministry said 67 of the 830 prepackaged food items it tested scored positive for horse DNA, the BBC said Saturday.

Horse meat poses no health risks, but officials and consumers alike have criticized food suppliers for misleading people about what they're being fed.

The Rev. Bernhard Felmberg, the senior representative of the Evangelical Church in Germany, said food otherwise thrown away could go to poor people who are struggling to buy food themselves.

"We as a Church find the throw-away mentality in our society concerning. How and whether to distribute the products in question would have to be examined," Felmberg said.

Hartwig Fischer, a prominent member of Germany's governing CDU Party, expressed a similar sentiment, but opposition members ridiculed the suggestion as an insult to the poor.

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