• Denmark's news in English
 
app_header_v3
City fires new salvo in Denmark's ‘meatball war’
The long-running pork argument has been dubbed the 'meatball war' in reference to a traditional Danish dish. Photo: Colourbox

City fires new salvo in Denmark's ‘meatball war’

The Local · 19 Jan 2016, 08:47

Published: 19 Jan 2016 08:47 GMT+01:00

The Randers City Council voted 16-15 on Monday night to require the city’s public institutions to serve pork products. 
 
The vote was part of a long-running debate in Denmark, with one side arguing that Danish values are under attack from multiculturalism and the other side maintaining that the whole situation is a nonexistent issue that has made an problem where there wasn’t one. 
 
The so-called ‘meatball war’ (frikadellekrigen) arguably hit its apex in 2013, when the summer’s slow news cycle was dominated by a debate on whether or not public institutions should bar pork in deference to Muslim children. 
 
While there are no official numbers on how many public institutions that ban pork, in 2013 it was estimated to be about 30 out of 1,719.
 
The ‘meatball war’ was revived last week when Integration Minister Inger Støjberg shared a false anecdote about an Aalborg family who pulled their child out of a public daycare when it banned pork. Aalborg officials and the institution in question both denied that a ban was ever put in place. 
 
 
On Monday night in Randers, city officials narrowly approved a proposal from the Danish People’s Party and Venstre to require all institutions to ensure that pork is part of their menus. 
 
"We will ensure that Danish children and youth can have pork in the future," DF councilman Frank Nørgaard told Randers Amtsavis. 
 
“We just want to ensure pork in our institutions for those who want it. This isn’t about a general distrust of our institutions’ leaders, but more and more places around the country are trying to sneak through [policies that say] there shouldn't be pork served in the institutions,” Nørgaard added. 
 
Councilman Mogens Nyholm of the Social Liberals (Radikale), who voted against the proposal, said the idea of defining ‘Danish food culture’ is absurd. 
 
 
Story continues below…
“What is Danish food culture? This right here screams to the heavens of emptiness. This is a pseudo-problem that doesn’t exist in Randers. We don’t have any institutions where you can’t eat a hot dog if you want,” he told Randers Amtsavis. 
 
According to Randers Amtavis, the local blow-up of the meatball war began last spring when it was discovered that one daycare institution in the city did not include pork on its lunch menu. 
 
City councilman Kasper Fuhr Christensen said that there was no record of a single parent complaining about the lack of pork and told Jyllands-Posten that the whole thing was “a problem that was created out of thin air”.
 
The term frikadellekrigen refers to the traditional Danish meatballs known as frikadeller. While the meatballs can be made in a variety of different ways, the most traditional recipe uses a mixture of pork and beef. 

For more news from Denmark, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

Today's headlines
Danish 'devil of death' nurse gets life for killing patients
Photo: Thomas Lekfeldt/Scanpix

A Danish nurse, dubbed a "devil of death" by prosecutors, was on Friday sentenced to life in prison for murdering three patients and trying to kill a fourth.

Brexit
Brits in Denmark left shocked and concerned by Brexit
British expats in Denmark were left feeling like these supporters of the 'Stronger In' campaign who watched the referendum result in London early on Friday. Photo: Rob Stothard/AFP/Scanpix

The Local spoke with a handful of British expats living in Denmark on Friday and not a single one was happy about the referendum result.

Roskilde Festival 2016
8 key questions ahead of this year’s Roskilde Festival
It's that time again! Roskilde begins on Saturday. Photo: Tobias Nicolai/Roskilde Festival

Denmark's biggest party is about to kick off – here's what we'll be keeping our eyes on as The Local once again heads to Roskilde.

Brexit
Denmark vows to defend euro peg after Brexit vote
The Danish krone has had a fixed exchange rate since 1982. Photo: Colourbox

National Bank "will do what it necessary to maintain a stable exchange rate".

Brexit
EU-sceptic Danish party calls for referendum, PM says no
PM Lars Løkke Rasmussen and FM Kristian Jensen addressed the Brexit results on Friday morning. Photo: Uffe Weng/Scanpix

The Red-Green Alliance wants a Danish referendum on EU membership within a year but the PM reaffirms that "we belong in the EU".

Maersk to mull splitting group under new CEO

Danish oil and shipping conglomerate A.P. Moller-Maersk named a new chief executive and said major changes could be in store.

Brexit
Danish PM: Brexit ‘very sad’ for Denmark and EU
Leave supporters cheer the referendum results on Thursday night. Photo: Toby Melville/Scanpix

Lars Løkke Rasmussen said on Friday morning that he is disappointed in the United Kingdom’s decision to leave the EU.

Brexit
Why Denmark won't try to follow the UK out of the EU
Photo: Bjørn Wylezich/Iris/Scanpix

With Brexit a reality, many point to Denmark as being the next country to follow suit but Danish experts say they are wrong.

Denmark's Sankt Hans Aften explained: Witches and rain
How many hay witches will die tonight? Photo: Colourbox

Denmark will be ablaze with bonfires on Thursday night – if predicted heavy rains don't put a damper on the Sankt Hans Aften celebrations.

Brexit
We hate EU too but 'please stay', Danish daily urges Brits
A woman rides a bicycle as she leaves a polling station at the Royal Hospital in Chelsea, west London on Thursday. Photo: Leon Neal/Scanpix

In a rare move, Berlingske made an English-language appeal to Brits.

Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
International
After Brexit, Danish PM resists calls for similar EU referendum
Sponsored Article
VIDEO: Why Malmö is the world's 6th best city for biking
Copenhagen police tear down Christiania cannabis market
National
Copenhagen police tear down Christiania cannabis market
Danish PM: Orlando shooting act of 'hatred'
International
Danish PM: Orlando shooting act of 'hatred'
Society
Sex campaigns lead to Danish baby boom
National
Don't worry Denmark, the world still loves you
Culture
Danish diversity ad a massive social media hit – have you seen it?
National
Denmark scraps green card but spares current holders
Denmark takes historic step for transgender rights
Society
Denmark takes historic step for transgender rights
Denmark to impose new 'integration' rules on kids
National
Denmark to impose new 'integration' rules on kids
Green card holders in Denmark in race against time
National
Green card holders in Denmark in race against time
How Copenhagen achieved an ‘organic food revolution’
National
How Copenhagen achieved an ‘organic food revolution’
Travel
The second best destination in all of Europe is...
Sport
We are the champions! Denmark wins world badminton team title
After 100 years, British WW1 sailor identified in Denmark
National
After 100 years, British WW1 sailor identified in Denmark
Society
Strangest political story in Denmark just got stranger
International
Keeping Denmark in Europol 'maybe impossible'
Analysis & Opinion
Green card holders tell Denmark to keep its promise
National
Denmark picks F-35 in historic jet purchase
Society
Denmark to no longer define transgender as mental illness
National
Danish minister tells 'Sharia' troublemakers to 'get a job'
Culture
Danish 'martyr' exhibit reported to police
National
Denmark extends 'temporary' border measures for sixth time
2,271
jobs available