(Only if you live in Holland)
By CLINTON MANNING, Business Editor

FAST FOOD giant McDonald's banned British beef yesterday - but only for their customers in Holland.

Butch bosses vetoed 60 tons of hamburger meat which contained 18 tons of British beef.

The action came as shoppers here -alarmed by the Mad Cow scare - shunned home beef and rushed to claim refunds on meat already bought.

Major supermarket chains reported a sales slump of up to 20 per cent, despite big price reductions. Tesco said customers were switching to white meat. Sainsbury's spoke of a "noticeable decline" in beef sales.

The McDonald's ban in Holland was imposed after customers there expressed fears over British beef.

Spokeswoman Yvette Bannier even said the suspect supply could be shipped back to Britain.

"Maybe McDonald's in the United Kingdom is still open to using this meat," she said.


The firm has 600 outlets across the nation. It is still sticking by British beef, despite Wednesday's official confirmation that humans can catch the CJD version of Mad Cow Disease from infected beef.

McDonald's UK said its Dutch counterpart was only following government policy there, and added: "We are completely confident about the safety of our Big Mac beef and the beef in all our products."

But Italy and Switzerland have also banned British beef, bringing the boycott toll worldwide to at least 20.

Shoppers' fears here were summed up by Irene and Wilfred Young, from Hengeod, Mid Glam, who said; "We've got a lovely joint in the fridge, but it's going in the bin."

Game seller Charles Bach, of Chessington, Surry, said his customers were snapping up alligator and crocodile meat, rather than risk beef.

  • THE Mirror phone poll on beef showed 1,100 readers felt it was unsafe to eat. Only 443 prounced it safe.

    ..and girl in their TV ad is a veggie

    ACTRESS Kellie Bright is promoting meaty breakfasts for burger giants McDonald's - despite being a vegetarian since the age of 12.

    In the TV ads Kellie, 19, plays a hungry commuter dreaming of a 99p Big Breakfast of sausage, hash brown, muffin and scrambled egg.

    But last night animal-lover Kellie hit back: "I don't see how there could be a problem.
    "It was a job and I wasn't asked to eat the breakfast - just talk about it.
    "As a vegetarian, I would just take away the sausage.
    "I can't be accused of being hypocritical working for McDonald's.
    They've even brought out a veggie burger."

    Kellie plays rebel Kate - ironically also a vegetarian - in Radio 4's The Archers.

    Scriptwriters had to hastily rewrite plots this week to bring the rural drama - which is recored in advance - up-to-date with the crisis over Mad Cow Disease.

    Actors were brought back into the studio for the last-minute changes. Editor Vanessa Whitburn said:" It is a major issue affesting every farming community and we needed to refer to it."

    Consumer watchdogs last night slapped a health warning on beef as Eurocrates threatened to outlaw its sale even in British shops.

    Sheila McKechnie, director of the Consumers Association, said the only totally safe solution in not to touch it.

    Germany, Singapore, New Zealand and Finland joined France, Belgium, Sweden, Holland and Portugal by closing their borders to Britsh beef, threatening thousands of jobs.

    South Africa, the biggest buyer outside Europe, is set to join them as the backlash spreads.