Belcampo Meat Co. admits errors at Santa Monica location

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Wednesday, May 26, 2021
Belcampo Meat Co. admits errors at Santa Monica location
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A former butcher at Belcampo's Santa Monica location claims customers were getting duped about what they were buying.

SANTA MONICA, Calif. (KABC) -- The Northern California-based high-end butcher shop Belcampo Meat Co. prides itself on total transparency in their supply chain. Just listen to its promotional videos.

"We raise all of our livestock right here on this 27,000 acre organic ranch in Northern California. It's processed right down the street in our USDA-certified slaughterhouse," said one video.

"We are 100% certified organic. We never feed our cows any corn whatsoever," said another video.

But according to one butcher at Belcampo's Santa Monica location who was fired last week, that hasn't been true recently at the Santa Monica store, and the company has admitted to errors at that particular location.

"Not local. It's from Tasmania. The filet you're buying for $47.99 a pound is from Tasmania," said the former butcher who goes by Evan.

In a now viral video, the former butcher apologizes to customers, saying he's lied to them for two and a half years, but kept his job for health insurance.

"Once again not Belcampo. Don't let people take your money. Don't let these people lie to you like this," said the former butcher.

Belcampo has numerous locations in California, sells online and to supermarkets, but claims individuals shops, like the Santa Monica store, have a small degree of autonomy for sourcing products in the case of a supply shortage, which the company experienced because of the pandemic.

In a statement to Eyewitness News, Belcampo's co-founder said:

"The preliminary results of our investigation show that unfortunately protocols both for sourcing and communicating product origin to customers were not being followed in our Santa Monica location. These errors made up a small percentage of total product."

"If you're charging a certain price, you're expecting a certain product. Just as a normal consumer. It's kind of like a bait-and-switch, false information," said Belcampo Santa Monica customer Chris Jackson.

Belcampo Meat Co. says it is retraining and re-educating employees on protocols and adding additional oversight. Again, the company believes the issue was isolated to this one store.