Questions were asked in Parliament in early September about the testing of a possible animal part which arrived in New Zealand with a shipment of palm kernel feed.
The limb was discovered in May on a Bay of Plenty dairy farm. It was originally identified as most likely being that of a small deer or goat species not present in New Zealand.
By June 26, MPI announced, following DNA testing by Landcare Research, it was confident the leg was from a New Zealand sheep despite of one of the four DNA samples indicating it was from a snapper.
Science team leader at Landcare Research, Lynley Hayes said Landcare Research did not extract the DNA but only tested the material that was sent.
"As you can see from the 99 per cent score, we are confident that that was most likely snapper.”
"How that vial came to be, and was sent to us, is something that we don't know - we just tested what we were given," Ms Hayes said.
Labour spokesman for primary industries, biosecurity and food safety Damien O'Connor, believes human error may have been at play prompting him to bring the matter to the attention of Parliament
Adapted from an article published by Fairfax media on September 3, 2013