Published: 07 Dec 2012 00:02 GMT+01:00 | Print version
Updated: 07 Dec 2012 00:02 GMT+01:00
A furious municipal councillor in Le Havre has demanded an inquiry after 8,500 servings of chocolate mousse were thrown away by cafeterias at 67 schools in the region around the city.
The desserts, destined for students at primary and elementary schools, were discarded last week because they contained pork gelatin, according to reports.
The measure was taken at the last minute due to concerns raised by kitchen staff about the use of pork products, which are proscribed by several religions, AFP said.
The desserts “can on occasion contain animal gelatin,” a spokesman from Le Havre’s city hall said.
Yves Bertrand, a municipal councillor and member of the Radical Party of the Left (PRG) said an investigation was needed to get at the bottom of what he called a “scandalous waste”.
Bertrand said the secular principles of public services should apply, meaning “strict neutrality” with regard to meals served at public school cafeterias.
“The presence supposed or proven of such and such a product in the confection of a chocolate mousse should obey a single rule: respect for food hygiene, and no other.”
The councillor said it was scandalous that such waste should occur when soup kitchens like the Restos du coeur and other charitable organizations were struggling to feed more and more people in France.
Philippe Brunel, an official from the city said the secular principles of the school system were not in question.
Rather than being faced with concerns about a mousse containing pork products, staff decided to simply replace it with another kind of dessert, Brunel is quoted as saying by Paris-Normandie.fr.
The cafeterias serve pork as a meal on a regular basis, but in such cases they always offer an alternative dish, he said.
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