Online retailer reports run on horse steaks in the wake of meat scandal
A DERBYSHIRE business that imports horse burgers and steaks has reported a big jump in sales since the processed meat scandal broke.
Online retailer ExoticMeats.co.uk, based at an industrial unit in Ripley, is one of only a few enterprises in the UK that markets horse meat direct to consumers.
As well as horse, the business also sells zebra, bison, water buffalo, impala, camel and crocodile in the form of steaks, burgers and sausages via its website.
While supermarkets and ready-meal specialist Findus have had their reputations dragged through the mud by selling processed horse meat as beef, Exotic Meats' website has attracted thousands of extra visitors since the scandal broke.
With every new aerial installed by AMC aerials I will fit an extra point in your bedroom or kitchen for an extra £10
New aerials fitted from £70
Call Adrian on 01332 418856
Terms: Must be an aerial supplied and fitted by AMC aerials
Contact: 01332 418856
Valid until: Friday, July 12 2013
ExoticMeats.co.uk is struggling to keep up with demand for its goods.
The business sources horse steaks and burgers from France via a UK importer and sells them online. Frozen meat is then boxed up and sent out across the country via next-day courier.
The scandal has hit confidence in supermarket processed meat products, horse meat having been found in ready meals and burgers in numerous outlets.
And the Derbyshire business believes that the nation's taste for horse and other alternative meats is more than just a flash in the pan.
Director Paul Webb said: "We have seen a ten-fold increase in sales since it came out that there was horse meat in Tesco products.
"That interest hadn't died down by the time that Findus ready meals were also found to contain horse so I think that interest in alternative meats will continue.
"Our suppliers are starting to run out now so horse meat is getting a bit scarce in the UK. It's just gone mad."
The horse meat sold by Mr Webb's firm is sourced from the Camargue region in the south of France via a UK importer responsible for verifying that the product adheres to the appropriate legislation governing what can enter the human food chain.
The website was set up 15 months ago and is one of a number of businesses operating from the same unit.
Mr Webb said: "We were selling kitchen accessories at food shows but saw that food was selling better so decided to do something a little bit different and people seemed to be really interested.
"Personally, I prefer zebra to horse because it has a slightly herbier taste. It is farmed in South Africa.
"As well as selling horse burgers and steaks, we are getting inquiries from North Africans who want camel meat but it has to be halal, which is proving difficult to get hold of."