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Lead shot for live quarry - a five-year transition, not a one-year solution


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Has anyone found out what the actual substance is that these bio wads are made from? Because I think that is a really crucial matter. It’s all very well saying it “disappears” but if it simply remains as a plastic but in smaller particles then it’s not in the least  “bio” or “eco” or whatever you want to call it. 

Someone mentioned above my major concern. These wads don’t land in a glass of water. They are discarded in their entirety, deposited on the top of a meadow just the same as any other non-fibre wad

To anyone who’s championing these bio wads I have a challenge for you: pop one in your mouth, chew it a few times and swallow it

Stock will die. 

Edited by Jim Neal
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15 minutes ago, Jim Neal said:

 

Stock will die. 

Are you sure? I think if that were the case plastic wads or other non fibre wads would have been banned a long time ago. 
The farmers I know have always said plastic wads won’t affect their livestock, they just don’t want them because they’re unsightly. 

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5 minutes ago, Scully said:

Are you sure? I think if that were the case plastic wads or other non fibre wads would have been banned a long time ago. 
The farmers I know have always said plastic wads won’t affect their livestock, they just don’t want them because they’re unsightly. 

We do horse fodder, hay and haylage we also 30 years ago used to do chopped silage for the beef and dairy farmers Cows sheep etc.probably  won’t eat a whole plastic wad cup, but saying that we have known a cow choke on the end of a French stick in there food. Anyway put the plastic wad cup through a forage harvester and feed tub you have plastic small enough to swallow.

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9 minutes ago, 8 shot said:

We do horse fodder, hay and haylage we also 30 years ago used to do chopped silage for the beef and dairy farmers Cows sheep etc.probably  won’t eat a whole plastic wad cup, but saying that we have known a cow choke on the end of a French stick in there food. Anyway put the plastic wad cup through a forage harvester and feed tub you have plastic small enough to swallow.

Like I say, none of the farmers I know are concerned regarding their stock. 

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3 hours ago, Jim Neal said:

To anyone who’s championing these bio wads I have a challenge for you: pop one in your mouth, chew it a few times and swallow it

Watch the TGS Youtube clip on Eley Eco Wad he does actually drink the water its been dissolving in, but still open to artistic license

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3 hours ago, Jim Neal said:

Has anyone found out what the actual substance is that these bio wads are made from? Because I think that is a really crucial matter. It’s all very well saying it “disappears” but if it simply remains as a plastic but in smaller particles then it’s not in the least  “bio” or “eco” or whatever you want to call it. 

Someone mentioned above my major concern. These wads don’t land in a glass of water. They are discarded in their entirety, deposited on the top of a meadow just the same as any other non-fibre wad

To anyone who’s championing these bio wads I have a challenge for you: pop one in your mouth, chew it a few times and swallow it

Stock will die. 

Hello Jim Neal,

I have too have been curious about this Bioammo. After doing a lot of digging, all I can find out is that the wad is made from material of “vegetable origin”. It doesn’t appear to be a bio plastic as such. It would be good to see some audacious publicity tests - getting animals to ingest it etc.....?!

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3 hours ago, Jim Neal said:

Has anyone found out what the actual substance is that these bio wads are made from?

Closely guarded commercial secret surely.

Vegetable-based corn starch type 'plastic' would be my guess, with some secret sauce to give it some lubricity as well as withstand the heat and pressure of being accelerated from zero to many m/s, once.

3 hours ago, Jim Neal said:

but if it simply remains as a plastic but in smaller particles

What do you think plastic is?

And that isn't what the commonly accepted definition of biodegrading is/

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I do suspect they are not ground breaking and that they have top secret ingredients, but something that can't be used in the food industry because they just break down in to small components something along the lines of microbeads mixed with some starch or something. As the Guns on Pegs Podcast said multi billion pound companies have be trying to do this for years and can't, but bingo a cartridge company can, it may ease the situation if they published the actual make up of the wad which they won't. They are sold on that they they are COMPOSTABLE if that makes a difference to Biodegradable.

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5 hours ago, Scully said:

Are you sure? I think if that were the case plastic wads or other non fibre wads would have been banned a long time ago.

Exactly that! In my experience, and according to the general consensus of anyone I know in farming/shooting, plastic wads ARE specifically forbidden on grazing land by landowners, because of the choking risk to stock.  As with many things in shooting & farming, "I heard" or "I was told" is the basis of a lot of things....but there are numerous reports of sheep lost to plastic wads that I know of.

Regardless of the risk to livestock, I simply will not shoot plastic wad cartridges anywhere because it's just unnecessary and unsightly littering in my opinion.

2 hours ago, udderlyoffroad said:

What do you think plastic is?

And that isn't what the commonly accepted definition of biodegrading is/

The word "plastic" started life as an adjective to describe the physical property of a substance.  As usual, over time we have bastardised the word into something different from its original meaning and turned it into a noun.  "Plastic" is an umbrella term used to describe:

  • Polyethylene Terephthalate (PETE or PET)
  • High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE)
  • Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC)
  • Low-Density Polyethylene (LDPE)
  • Polypropylene (PP)
  • Polystyrene or Styrofoam (PS)

The definition of "biodegradable" according to the good old OED is:

"capable of being decomposed by bacteria or other living organisms and thereby avoiding pollution."

The OED defines pollutions as:

"the presence in or introduction into the environment of a substance which has harmful or poisonous effects."

I personally see a flaw in the definition of biodegradability but maybe that's a topic for another time

 

2 hours ago, udderlyoffroad said:

Vegetable-based corn starch type 'plastic' would be my guess

My immediate assumption when this "bio" wad which "dissolved in water" was first mentioned was that it must be made from PVA, a substance whose properties I've been familiar with for many years.

Would you believe it, a bit of quick googling brings up one of Conor's favourite websites!!

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10924-009-0123-1

"We found that the PVA/starch blends would take 32.47, 16.20 and 12.47 years to degrade by 70% as their starch content 0, 20 and 40 wt%, respectively."

Not exactly overnight in a glass of water, is it?

The air is thick with the stench of bovine droppings.....

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6 hours ago, Jim Neal said:

Exactly that! In my experience, and according to the general consensus of anyone I know in farming/shooting, plastic wads ARE specifically forbidden on grazing land by landowners, because of the choking risk to stock.  As with many things in shooting & farming, "I heard" or "I was told" is the basis of a lot of things....but there are numerous reports of sheep lost to plastic wads that I know of.

Regardless of the risk to livestock, I simply will not shoot plastic wad cartridges anywhere because it's just unnecessary and unsightly littering in my opinion.

 

Sheep, cattle, deer and other grazing stock graze foreshores,  river banks and estuaries, all places where wildfowl inhabit, and where NTS only is permitted, and therefore steel shot and plastic wads. 
I haven’t heard of a single case of a grazing animal being killed by a plastic wad, either inland or in the foreshore where there must be millions of em. 
Our small syndicate bulk bought some Lyalvale Pigeon Power cartridges as they were very cheap, and as it turned out very effective. They have plastic wads. We used them over two seasons on our small syndicate. I still have some left.

Two of our members are farmers; they farm dairy and sheep, and one and a half drives is on their land, and the others over another farmers dairy and sheep land.  They aren’t concerned at all.

A mate who owns the land our rough shoot is on, is also a shooter; he farms beef and sheep. He isn’t fussy about which cartridges he uses for game or decoying, as long as they’re cheap, and sometimes turns up with plastic wadded cartridges. 
As I mentioned in another thread, I used plastic on bolting bunnies in another farmers wood. He isn’t bothered. 
I sometimes walk alongside the combine to shoot the rabbits for the same farmer, whom farms dairy and leases the grass over winter to a Fell sheep farmer, which bolt from the crop. When I asked if he was bothered about the wads or rabbits going through the combine, he told me that unless either was smaller than a grain of barley, it wasn’t going through. 🤷‍♂️
Like I said, if they posed a threat we wouldn’t be using them; they’re just unsightly. 

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1 hour ago, Scully said:

Sheep, cattle, deer and other grazing stock graze foreshores,  river banks and estuaries, all places where wildfowl inhabit, and where NTS only is permitted, and therefore steel shot and plastic wads. 
I haven’t heard of a single case of a grazing animal being killed by a plastic wad, either inland or in the foreshore where there must be millions of em. 
Our small syndicate bulk bought some Lyalvale Pigeon Power cartridges as they were very cheap, and as it turned out very effective. They have plastic wads. We used them over two seasons on our small syndicate. I still have some left.

Two of our members are farmers; they farm dairy and sheep, and one and a half drives is on their land, and the others over another farmers dairy and sheep land.  They aren’t concerned at all.

A mate who owns the land our rough shoot is on, is also a shooter; he farms beef and sheep. He isn’t fussy about which cartridges he uses for game or decoying, as long as they’re cheap, and sometimes turns up with plastic wadded cartridges. 
As I mentioned in another thread, I used plastic on bolting bunnies in another farmers wood. He isn’t bothered. 
I sometimes walk alongside the combine to shoot the rabbits for the same farmer, whom farms dairy and leases the grass over winter to a Fell sheep farmer, which bolt from the crop. When I asked if he was bothered about the wads or rabbits going through the combine, he told me that unless either was smaller than a grain of barley, it wasn’t going through. 🤷‍♂️
Like I said, if they posed a threat we wouldn’t be using them; they’re just unsightly. 

It’s never been proven a single human being has died from ingesting lead shot, but here we are ! Plastic is unsightly and I would say it close to littering, walk down your street dropping them pesky little cup and see  if anyone says anything. It’s brewing up a new problem for the very near future 

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24 minutes ago, clangerman said:

plastic wads just show the true motives of those behind this rubbish no call to ban them because they don’t affect the sale of game 

As I’ve said before the BASC told me this lead ban is 100% behind the sale of game meat to Europe nothing else.

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1 hour ago, 8 shot said:

It’s never been proven a single human being has died from ingesting lead shot, but here we are ! Plastic is unsightly and I would say it close to littering, walk down your street dropping them pesky little cup and see  if anyone says anything. It’s brewing up a new problem for the very near future 

I’m not disputing what you say in your first paragraph above at all, simply telling it as it is. If plastic wads were a problem for grazing domestic stock, we wouldn’t be using them, and yes, if we don’t get rid of plastic wads ( and cartridges for that matter....autos throw them everywhere ) then it will be yet another stick with which to beat us. 
As things are going, your average working man will shortly be priced out of shooting, and our org’s ( and BASC especially ) will become an exclusive gentlemen’s club, fully funded by those who can afford it. 🙂

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The voluntary transition being encouraged is to move away from lead and single-use plastics in ammunition used by those taking all live quarry with shotguns. Given the continued attempts at conspiracy theories taking us away from the OP I think it's worth repeating that in February last year nine organisations stated:

"In consideration of wildlife, the environment and to ensure a market for the healthiest game products, at home and abroad, we wish to see an end to both lead and single-use plastics in ammunition used by those taking all live quarry with shotguns within five years. The shooting community must maintain its place at the forefront of wildlife conservation and protection. Sustainability in our practices is of utmost importance.

Many years ago, wetland restrictions demanded a move away from lead shot and we believe it is necessary to begin a further phased transition. Recently, there have been significant developments in the quality and availability of non-lead shotgun cartridges, and plastic cases can now be recycled. For the first time, biodegradable shot cups for steel shot, with the necessary ballistics to ensure lethality, are available. These welcome advances are continuing at an ever-quickening pace, in response to demand from a changing market. Such advances mean that, over the coming years, a complete transition is achievable.

We are jointly calling for our members to engage in this transition and work with us, the Gun Trade Association and the cartridge manufacturers to ensure that further viable alternatives are developed for every situation involving live quarry. This is an opportunity to take the initiative and ensure the reputation of the shooting community, as custodians of the countryside, is both maintained and enhanced."

These nine organisations are: BASC, Countryside Alliance, Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust, British Game Alliance, Country Land and Business Association, Moorland Association, National Gamekeepers' Organisation, Scottish Land and Estates, and Game Farmers Association.

The OP was an update on the voluntary transition and a discussion around plastic in shotgun cartridges is indeed relevant.

Shotgun wads can be sometimes eaten by livestock and there is anecdotal evidence that felt wads are more likely to be eaten than plastic wads because they are more palatable. However, there has not been any scientific research investigating toxic effects to livestock of eating shotgun wads of any type; albeit there is a perception that plastic wads could pose a risk to livestock because they there are more visible to us on the land.

Shotgun wads using paper or water-soluble materials will break down quicker on land relative to plastic wads.

Plastic wads can find their way into wetlands and the marine environment. There has been research in USA and Denmark on the potential negative impacts of this on wildlife as well as contributing to marine litter generally.

The innovation of new, effective, field-tested sustainable ammunition is continuing apace and this is laying the foundation for a voluntary transition away from single-use plastic and lead shot in the UK.

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18 hours ago, Jim Neal said:

Has anyone found out what the actual substance is that these bio wads are made from? Because I think that is a really crucial matter. It’s all very well saying it “disappears” but if it simply remains as a plastic but in smaller particles then it’s not in the least  “bio” or “eco” or whatever you want to call it. 

Someone mentioned above my major concern. These wads don’t land in a glass of water. They are discarded in their entirety, deposited on the top of a meadow just the same as any other non-fibre wad

To anyone who’s championing these bio wads I have a challenge for you: pop one in your mouth, chew it a few times and swallow it

Stock will die. 

Please see my separate post on this subject and the photos I included. Both taken on grass and they are turning to mush and dissolving with no trace in a relatively short space of time. Indeed I was out Saturday and no sign of any. Plenty of fibre wads lying around though.

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Hi 8 shot. I use Eley 20gauge (bio) steel cartridges. If you would like wads to test l will gladly send you a few used and unused . I have a few in 12gauge as well. If you email a friends address l could post them for you.

A good friend of mine uses lead cartridges with fibre wads in his older side by side hammer and hammer less shotguns. When we patterned them last year we found the cartridges had a plastic obturator under the fibre wad. I’m sure they were Hull cartridges. Maybe other manufacturers use them, it’s worth checking . 

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11 minutes ago, Gas seal said:

Hi 8 shot. I use Eley 20gauge (bio) steel cartridges. If you would like wads to test l will gladly send you a few used and unused . I have a few in 12gauge as well. If you email a friends address l could post them for you.

A good friend of mine uses lead cartridges with fibre wads in his older side by side hammer and hammer less shotguns. When we patterned them last year we found the cartridges had a plastic obturator under the fibre wad. I’m sure they were Hull cartridges. Maybe other manufacturers use them, it’s worth checking . 

Hi Gas Seal, Thanks for your very kind offer I’m a great fan of Eley I use the pigeon hv and pigeon select exclusively in my 12 bore but have never got on at all with there 20 gauge shells I’m hopefully popping my gun in to be multi choked in the next week or two so will be keen to try all the main suspects with bio wads but am I right in think gamebore have yet to release there full BioWad steel cartridge yet. 

 

29 minutes ago, Dave at kelton said:

Please see my separate post on this subject and the photos I included. Both taken on grass and they are turning to mush and dissolving with no trace in a relatively short space of time. Indeed I was out Saturday and no sign of any. Plenty of fibre wads lying around though.

I curious to how there is nothing what so ever left. Nothing can just disappear completely, my concern is there are tiny residues that see can’t see but pop up later to kick us where it hurts ie micro beads 

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2 hours ago, Conor O'Gorman said:

The voluntary transition being encouraged is to move away from lead and single-use plastics in ammunition used by those taking all live quarry with shotguns. Given the continued attempts at conspiracy theories taking us away from the OP I think it's worth repeating that in February last year nine organisations stated:

"In consideration of wildlife, the environment and to ensure a market for the healthiest game products, at home and abroad, we wish to see an end to both lead and single-use plastics in ammunition used by those taking all live quarry with shotguns within five years. The shooting community must maintain its place at the forefront of wildlife conservation and protection. Sustainability in our practices is of utmost importance.

Many years ago, wetland restrictions demanded a move away from lead shot and we believe it is necessary to begin a further phased transition. Recently, there have been significant developments in the quality and availability of non-lead shotgun cartridges, and plastic cases can now be recycled. For the first time, biodegradable shot cups for steel shot, with the necessary ballistics to ensure lethality, are available. These welcome advances are continuing at an ever-quickening pace, in response to demand from a changing market. Such advances mean that, over the coming years, a complete transition is achievable.

We are jointly calling for our members to engage in this transition and work with us, the Gun Trade Association and the cartridge manufacturers to ensure that further viable alternatives are developed for every situation involving live quarry. This is an opportunity to take the initiative and ensure the reputation of the shooting community, as custodians of the countryside, is both maintained and enhanced."

These nine organisations are: BASC, Countryside Alliance, Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust, British Game Alliance, Country Land and Business Association, Moorland Association, National Gamekeepers' Organisation, Scottish Land and Estates, and Game Farmers Association.

The OP was an update on the voluntary transition and a discussion around plastic in shotgun cartridges is indeed relevant.

Shotgun wads can be sometimes eaten by livestock and there is anecdotal evidence that felt wads are more likely to be eaten than plastic wads because they are more palatable. However, there has not been any scientific research investigating toxic effects to livestock of eating shotgun wads of any type; albeit there is a perception that plastic wads could pose a risk to livestock because they there are more visible to us on the land.

Shotgun wads using paper or water-soluble materials will break down quicker on land relative to plastic wads.

Plastic wads can find their way into wetlands and the marine environment. There has been research in USA and Denmark on the potential negative impacts of this on wildlife as well as contributing to marine litter generally.

The innovation of new, effective, field-tested sustainable ammunition is continuing apace and this is laying the foundation for a voluntary transition away from single-use plastic and lead shot in the UK.

Conor,

I have now read the paper you sent me re lead shot / terrestrial habitats. Well..... more of a literature review really. I have to say it was very robust and thorough. This is the authoritative evidence I’ve been looking for - and does leave us in no doubt re phasing out lead shot. 
 

May I recommend that this paper becomes your ‘gold standard’ study’ - the clincher. The earlier biased and weak papers which were being bandied about were never credible. You were always going to meet resistance with those. I think you (we) have an irrefutable evidence base now. 
 

I hope you didn’t mind my earlier challenges re the initial papers - they had obvious problems which needed highlighting. Thank you for your  efforts. 

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3 hours ago, Conor O'Gorman said:

The voluntary transition being encouraged is to move away from lead and single-use plastics in ammunition used by those taking all live quarry with shotguns. Given the continued attempts at conspiracy theories taking us away from the OP I think it's worth repeating that in February last year nine organisations stated:

"In consideration of wildlife, the environment and to ensure a market for the healthiest game products, at home and abroad, we wish to see an end to both lead and single-use plastics in ammunition used by those taking all live quarry with shotguns within five years. The shooting community must maintain its place at the forefront of wildlife conservation and protection. Sustainability in our practices is of utmost importance.

Many years ago, wetland restrictions demanded a move away from lead shot and we believe it is necessary to begin a further phased transition. Recently, there have been significant developments in the quality and availability of non-lead shotgun cartridges, and plastic cases can now be recycled. For the first time, biodegradable shot cups for steel shot, with the necessary ballistics to ensure lethality, are available. These welcome advances are continuing at an ever-quickening pace, in response to demand from a changing market. Such advances mean that, over the coming years, a complete transition is achievable.

We are jointly calling for our members to engage in this transition and work with us, the Gun Trade Association and the cartridge manufacturers to ensure that further viable alternatives are developed for every situation involving live quarry. This is an opportunity to take the initiative and ensure the reputation of the shooting community, as custodians of the countryside, is both maintained and enhanced."

These nine organisations are: BASC, Countryside Alliance, Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust, British Game Alliance, Country Land and Business Association, Moorland Association, National Gamekeepers' Organisation, Scottish Land and Estates, and Game Farmers Association.

The OP was an update on the voluntary transition and a discussion around plastic in shotgun cartridges is indeed relevant.

Shotgun wads can be sometimes eaten by livestock and there is anecdotal evidence that felt wads are more likely to be eaten than plastic wads because they are more palatable. However, there has not been any scientific research investigating toxic effects to livestock of eating shotgun wads of any type; albeit there is a perception that plastic wads could pose a risk to livestock because they there are more visible to us on the land.

Shotgun wads using paper or water-soluble materials will break down quicker on land relative to plastic wads.

Plastic wads can find their way into wetlands and the marine environment. There has been research in USA and Denmark on the potential negative impacts of this on wildlife as well as contributing to marine litter generally.

The innovation of new, effective, field-tested sustainable ammunition is continuing apace and this is laying the foundation for a voluntary transition away from single-use plastic and lead shot in the UK.

You are obviously very intelligent and very passionate about what your saying, but now you seem to have jumped on the plastic wads are bad train, something I can remember being said 20 to 30 years ago. My personal opinion for what it’s worth, which I feel not very much, is that the idea is correct but first get the infrastructure in place. Get the cartridge manufacturers producing a well proven product, which it’s not yet, by there own admission and ample capacity. Then introduce it in sensible stages your DIY shoot that sells nothing and only shooting  20 birds a day doesn’t need to be bullied into it, it’ll come naturally You pretty much through the game shooting world to wolves in saying 77% of ducks at game dealers had lead shot in, true or not I don’t know. Then you ask use to engage to help with the transition, then you wonder why your getting stick 

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7 hours ago, 8 shot said:

As I’ve said before the BASC told me this lead ban is 100% behind the sale of game meat to Europe nothing else.

as connor ignored your comment despite a nudge from me which he also ignored it’s clearly true obviously wildlife and the environment count for nothing against selling game to those peddling this rubbish 

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5 hours ago, 8 shot said:

Hi Gas Seal, Thanks for your very kind offer I’m a great fan of Eley I use the pigeon hv and pigeon select exclusively in my 12 bore but have never got on at all with there 20 gauge shells I’m hopefully popping my gun in to be multi choked in the next week or two so will be keen to try all the main suspects with bio wads but am I right in think gamebore have yet to release there full BioWad steel cartridge yet. 

 

I curious to how there is nothing what so ever left. Nothing can just disappear completely, my concern is there are tiny residues that see can’t see but pop up later to kick us where it hurts ie micro beads 

It’s just a jelly as they disintegrate, I am guessing some form of starch.

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5 minutes ago, clangerman said:

as connor ignored your comment despite a nudge from me which he also ignored it’s clearly true obviously wildlife and the environment count for nothing against selling game to those peddling this rubbish 

Europe is apparently is our (the uk) biggest customer for Game and Venison. Europe copped a deaf un on Lead while we were in The EU now obviously there are scores to settle now. There is and never will be a huge market in this country for game, the supermarkets will "Never sanction putting a possible Toxic Substance in a food they sell" Horse meat yes, but saying nothing is fine. It's mixed messages

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