HUNDREDS of packaged meat items and equipment have been seized in South Derbyshire as part of a bid to close down a suspected illegal meat production operation. Officers from Staffordshire County Council revealed that it had visited a site in the district and confiscated high-end products such as venison which did not have authorised health stamps.
Other sites in Stafford and Uttoxeter were also raided, with two people being arrested and street bailed as a result.
Cabinet member for economy and infrastructure Mark Winnington said: “Food fraud damages the local economy, affecting legitimate businesses, jobs and consumers.
“The council has joined together with other agencies to use our resources effectively and fortunately managed to stop illegal activity. The products seized have no traceability and do not have approved health stamps.
“If it is found that they have been fraudulently using another business’s stamp this could have put jobs on the line.
“It is in all our interests to make Staffordshire a safer and more prosperous county which is why today’s operation is important.”
The operation was supported by environmental health officers at a range of organisations including East Staffordshire Borough Council, South Derbyshire District Council and Staffordshire Police.
The investigation followed an initial call to Stafford Borough Council by a member of the public.
Meat products were seized from the South Derbyshire premises as well as production equipment, including packaging and labels.
It is thought health stamps from other businesses may have been fraudulently used.
Initial analysis of test purchased items has shown meat contamination.