Irish Pork Not Up to Scratch for Top Chefs

IRELAND - The vast majority of top chefs avoid using home-produced pork because of poor standards, according to a new survey.
calendar icon 7 September 2009
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And an organisation that represents 200 leading chefs warned that continuing poor standards in producing pork "will ultimately lead to another scare" like the dioxin crisis last December.

According to, Euro-Toques issued the caution yesterday as it unveiled a survey that showed most chefs said the current production system was threatening food security and felt feeding standards were below par.

According to the findings, 88pc of chefs were concerned about commercial production and said feed and use of genetically modified organisms were key concerns, followed closely by animal welfare. The same percentage of chefs said they were not happy with the quality of pork available in the country, with the main problem being lack of taste.

All of the chefs said they would be willing to pay more for better quality pork. "What our chefs have told us is that most of the pork available is bland and uninteresting and many of them don't feature it on their menu at all as people don't seem to want it," said Feargal O'Donnell, commissioner-general of Euro-Toques and head chef at Wineport Lodge in Glasson near Athlone.

"It is a pity as pork and bacon are very traditional in Ireland. Our chefs want a product with better taste and a better story; a story which includes quality feed, local production and high animal welfare standards."

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