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A meat trading company could not rely on the judgment of a local authority meat inspector to clear its name of char...
A meat trading company could not rely on the judgment of a local authority meat inspector to clear its name of charges of supplying unfit beef, the High Court heard today.

Carrick DC is seeking to overturn Truro Crown Court's decision in May 1992 to acquit Taunton Vale Meat Traders Ltd on appeal.

The company had originally been fined £7,000 with £2,000 costs by Falmouth and Karrier Magistrates.

Carrick contends this judgment was wrongly overturned by the Truro court when it held that the company had exercised 'due diligence' in ensuring that the meat was fit simply because it had been stamped in Honiton by a meat inspector from a second council, East Devon DC.

Taunton Vale is not disputing that in 1991 it transported a consignment of unfit beef from its slaughterhouse to a firm of meat processors.

'Relying upon others to pass the meat fit for consumption is not sufficient,' Carrick's barrister Roderick Denyer QC said. 'The company should have had its own system of inspection as well as that provided by the local authority'.

He said that it was not until the beef reached Cornwall Meat Processsors Ltd that it was checked by Carrick's meat inspector who found it to be unfit for human consumption.

Carrick is seeking to have the case sent back to Truro Crown Court with a direction that Taunton Vale's appeal be dismissed.

For its part the meat company claims the Crown Court's decision should stand. The hearing continues.

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