Consumers are being warned not to eat Irish pork and bacon as an investigation was launched into the discovery of potentially harmful dioxins.

Up to 100,000 Irish pigs are to be culled following the food scare in Ireland after the discovery of dioxins in the meat.

Police have been called to investigate how PCB toxins got into animal feed used for pigs, some of whose meat was exported to Britain and up to 30 other countries.

Supermarkets and food stores across Europe began pulling Irish pork products from their shelves, and restaurants and hotels have been told not to cook dishes using potentially contaminated meat.

Nine farms in Northern Ireland have been identified as having used the toxic pig feed. It has been estimated that €125m (£109m) worth of food products will have to be destroyed.

The UK's Food Standards Agency advised consumers not to eat pork or pork products from Ireland or Northern Ireland but said the contamination was "not an immediate toxic risk".

The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) and the government made the announcement after pork products on several farms were found to have had between 80 and 200 times more dioxins than the safety limit.

The recall affects all pork produced since September 1.  The recall also affects Irish exports of pork to other European countries. Britain, Germany, France and Italy all import significant quantities, while America and Korea are also buyers.

Dioxins are environmental contaminants that may be formed during combustion processes and may be present in industrial wastes. It is illegal for dioxins to be in food products above a certain level.

Dioxin poisoning can occur when a person breathes in contaminated dust, ingests it or when there is skin contact.

If you have experienced dioxin poisoning you may be entitled to claim compensation and Thompsons Solicitors may be able to assist you. For more information call us on 08000 224 224 or complete one of our online personal injury compensation claim forms.