Shanghai has shut a factory of US food provider OSI Group for selling out-of-date meat to restaurant giants including McDonald's and KFC, authorities said Monday, in China's latest food safety scandal.
A Shanghai television channel, which reported the original allegations, said that workers at the plant mixed expired meat with the fresh product and deliberately misled quality inspectors from McDonald's.
City officials closed the Shanghai Husi Food Co. factory on Sunday and seized products which allegedly used the expired meat, the Shanghai food and drug administration said in a statement.
Police were investigating, it said, threatening "severe punishment" in future.
Television footage showed workers in white suits picking up meat and hamburger patties from the floor before putting them back into processing machinery, and one employee handling out-of-date beef and calling it "stinky meat".
McDonald's said in a statement it had "immediately" stopped using the factory's products while restaurant operator Yum separately said its KFC and Pizza Hut establishments had also halted use of its meat.
KFC has faced food safety issues in China before, when authorities found excessive levels of antibiotics in chicken it sourced from local suppliers in 2012.
Other customers of Husi Food included Burger King, Papa John's Pizza and coffee chain Starbucks, the Shanghai Daily newspaper reported Monday.
Furniture maker Ikea, which had been named by Chinese media as serving the factory's meat at in-store restaurants, said it stopped using the company's products last year, and sandwich maker Subway also denied it uses meat from the firm.