GLOBAL RETAIL GIANT Wal-Mart has recalled a donkey meat product from some Chinese stores after regulators said that it contained fox meat.
The ‘Five Spice Donkey Meat’ was tested by the Shandong Food and Drug Administration, which stated that it had found fox meat in the product.
The company admitted today that tests found traces of other animals’ DNA. It said it will reimburse customers who bought the donkey meat 50 yuan (€6).
Donkey meat is not a Chinese staple meat dish, but is commonly consumed as a snack.
Wal-Mart will now independently DNA test all of its “high risk” meats in China, a procedure which is not required by retailers under Chinese food laws, a spokeswoman said.
The retail giant would also cooperate with food officials in the eastern province of Shandong with their probe into the “adulteration incident”, said a statement posted on Sina Weibo, a Chinese Twitter equivalent.
“We are deeply sorry for this whole affair,” said Wal-Mart’s China president and CEO Greg Foran according to the Weibo statement, posted Wednesday.
It did not give an explanation for how the contamination happened, but Foran added that the company would increase its focus on “supplier management”.
China has seen several food safety scares in recent years, including one in which the industrial chemical melamine was added to milk formula in 2008, killing at least six babies and making 300,000 ill.
Wal-Mart plans to open up to 110 new stores in China over the next two years, according to the company’s website.