Curriculum Vitae

name: Marja-Liisa Hovi
occupation: Veterinary Surgeon with a speciality in red meat hygiene
relevance: Worked in various large EC approved export abattoirs in Finland, Botswana and the UK

previous experience:

1/ In April 1994 I worked for a month as an Official Veterinary Surgeon at Alec Jarrett Ltd. in Kingswood Borough Council in Bristol. Alec Jarrett is a high throughput EC approved export abattoir and cutting plant and supplies raw material for hamburger patties for McKey Food Services Ltd.During the working period at Alec Jarrett Ltd, the plant supplied McKey Food Services Ltd with an average of 20,000 lbs of beef cuttings per week. All consignments at this time were destined to the plant in Milton Keynes.


In the witnesses capacity as a veternary surgeon and specialist on red meat hygiene, we are provided with an extremely detailed account of discrepencies which were manifest in the abbatoir in which he was emloyed and which supplied McDonalds, and the failure to fulfill the companies own standards and requirements.

In spite of being an EC approved abbatoir and cutting plant Alec Jarrett Ltd was operating under conditions that are a far cry of the EC legislation standards and was allowed to do so by the Inspectors of the Ministry of Agriculture on conditions that extensive improvements be made in the near future. It was obvious from the past correspondence between the previous Official Veterinary Surgeon, the plant management and the MAFF officials that this unacceptable situation concerning the hygiene standards and the structural deficiencies had been prevalent for several years.

No hygiene checks or quality control measures were carried out at the premises and my suggestions to set up a surface swab programme were met with strong resistance.

The carcasses were washed with high pressure water before the inspection. This practice is dangerous as it can lead to the inspectors missing pathological changes and leads to airborne contamination.

I was dismissed by my employer, the veterinary meat hygeine practice Eville and Jones of 36 Market Place, Bolsover, after a month's working period. My dismissal was a culmination of severe pressure put on me both by my employer and the management of the plant to sign export certificates without the necessary back-up documentation to ensure that the animals came from BSE (Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy) free holdings as required by the importing countries.