Martin McAdam, of Co Monaghan-based McAdam Foods, has told AgriLand that he is meeting barristers in Dublin today in order to press ahead with his legal action against the ABP Group. He is seeking an apology and compensation for loss of earnings from an alleged defamation of character in the wake of last year’s horsemeat scandal and assertions made publicly by ABP regarding his business.

“Our plan is to be in court before the summer,” McAdam added.

McAdam will allege in the High Court that ABP deliberately made “false and malicious allegations” about him and his meat-trading business. It will be further alleged that this was in order to deflect media attention from ABP who were at the centre of the horsemeat scandal at that particular time.

In its report into the horsemeat scandal, published last March, the Department of Agriculture indicated that there was no evidence to confirm that McAdam Food Products knowingly traded processed meat product that was subsequently found to have tested positive for equine DNA.

“The department report exonerated my business,” McAdam continued. “And this is one of the core points that I would like brought out, courtesy of the pending court action.

“This time last year my business and entire family were placed at the centre of a storm, which was not of our making.”

In response to these developments the ABP group issued the following statement to AgriLand: “ABP does not believe that there is any basis for the claim or that it has damaged Mr McAdam’s reputation or the reputation of McAdam Food Products.”