Ikea's meatballs hit by horse meat scandal

As the furniture giant pulls tainted Swedish meatballs from its shelves, the supplier says shipments to the U.S. aren't affected.

By Aimee Picchi Feb 25, 2013 12:02PM

Swedish meatballs at an IKEA restaurant (© Rolf Adlercreutz/Alamy)With its massive floor plan and crowds of bargain hunters, shopping at Ikea can make you hungry enough to eat a horse, but the furniture giant was probably hoping that would remain a figure of speech for its famed Swedish meatballs.

Ikea's meatballs -- served in its cafeterias and sold frozen for customers to take home -- have been pulled into Europe's widening horse meat scandal. Authorities in the Czech Republic said they found horse meat in frozen meatballs labeled as beef and pork, and which had been sold in 13 countries across Europe, reports The Associated Press.

More than 1,600 pounds of Kottbullar meatballs were halted from reaching Ikea's store shelves.However, a spokeswoman told AP that meatballs from the same batch had made it to countries including Britain, Ireland and Italy. 

The supplier also shipped meatballs bound for the U.S., but those products weren't affected, the spokeswoman said. The supplier, Familjen Dafgard, said on its Website it was investigating and would receive test results in the next few days, according to Reuters

"Our global recommendation is to not recall or stop selling meatballs," the Ikea spokeswoman told the AP.

That was undermined by Ikea's Swedish branch announcing on its Facebook page that it would stop selling or serving meatballs in its stores, the AP notes.

Ikea is the latest company to discover horse meat in its ready-made food, with Nestlé (NSRGY) earlier this month pulling pasta dishes after finding equine DNA in some meals. Other affected companies include Wal-Mart (WMT), Burger King (BKW) and Tesco (TESO). 

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Feb 25, 2013 4:30PM
So . . . is horse meat bad for me?  Otherwise, why is eating a horse different than eating a cow or chicken?
Feb 25, 2013 3:05PM
Meh - not that big a deal, horse meat is edible.

BTW, tell Ikea that if they find it in the meatballs in the US they can send them to me :)

Feb 25, 2013 7:53PM
My grand mother ate horse meat during WWII.  If it was good enough for her, its good enough for me.  The issue here is that it is not listed as an ingredient.
Feb 25, 2013 4:06PM
wow! they should charge more for those meatballs. No wonder they are so yummy!


Feb 27, 2013 2:49AM
I'm not entirely sure what the problem is.Maybe they just need to add a disclaimer to the packages "may contain horse meat" I'm pretty sure no ones gonna care.
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