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M&S & Aldi suspend 2 Sisters orders after undercover video footage aired

Following the undercover news footage from ITV News and The Guardian of a 2 Sisters Food Group factory in the West Midlands, M&S and Aldi have suspended chicken deliveries from the company.

The undercover filming showed chicken falling on the floor and being put back into the trays by factory workers, and the investigation alleges that chicken kill dates are being changed.

ITV News and the Guardian said in a statement that more than 20 workers had confirmed the unhygienic practices took place, while some said they will no longer eat chicken from supermarkets. Some workers also claimed the chicken that supermarkets reject is sometimes repackaged at the factory and sent out again.

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) is now looking into accusations that the 2 Sisters Food Group duped shoppers into buying meat past its use-by date.

The Food Standards Agency said, ‘The FSA takes any allegations of inaccurate labelling and breaches in hygiene regulations very seriously.

‘Our experts are reviewing the footage to determine whether the incidents shown break the rules, and if so we will take prompt and proportionate action with the business concerned.’

The 2 Sisters Food Group, which also supplies chicken to Tesco, Sainsbury’s, and Lidl, has responded with the following statement: 'We have been made aware of several broad allegations made by The Guardian/ITV in relation to inappropriate procedures, food safety and hygiene issues at two of our poultry processing facilities.

'We view these allegations extremely seriously. However, we have not been given the time or the detailed evidence to conduct any thorough investigations to establish the facts, which makes a fulsome response very difficult.

'What we can confirm is that hygiene and food safety will always be the number one priority within the business, and they remain at its very core.

'We also successfully operate in one of the most tightly-controlled and highly regulated food sectors in the world.

'We are subject to multiple and frequent unannounced audits from the FSA, BRC, Red Tractor, independent auditors as well as our customers. By example, our facility in the West Midlands under investigation received nine audits (five unannounced) in the months of July and August alone.

'However, we are never complacent and remain committed to continually improving our processes and procedures. If, on presentation of further evidence, it comes to light any verifiable transgressions have been made at any of our sites, we will leave no stone unturned in investigating and remedying the situation immediately.'

The 2 Sisters Food Group was founded in 1993 by Ranjit Singh Boparan and now employs 23,000 staff.