Published: Sun, August 13, 2017
World | By Carl Welch

15 nations get tainted eggs, products in growing scandal

15 nations get tainted eggs, products in growing scandal

The insecticide is said to be harmful to the liver, kidneys and thyroid glands if enough are eaten.

Other affected European Union countries are France, Sweden, Britain, Austria, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia and Denmark, commission spokesman Daniel Rosario said, as well as non-EU member Switzerland.

But the World Health Organization said that, when digested in large quantities, the chemical could cause harm to the kidneys, liver and thyroid glands.

The European Commission announced on Friday that tainted eggs were sent to Switzerland and Hong Kong as well as 15 member countries.

Products in United Kingdom supermarkets were removed on Thursday after it emerged that the initial Food Standards Agency claim that 21,000 contaminated eggs had hit the United Kingdom was a gross underestimate.

A spokeswoman in Brussels said the situation was "evolving by the day", as criminal investigators continued to hold two men arrested for fraud after a series of raids in Belgium and the Netherlands.

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) in Britain said it was very unlikely that there was a risk to public health.

"Because the content is illegal, Danæg Products must withdraw the eggs from their customers".

Danish food safety authorities say 20 tons of boiled and peeled eggs linked to the pesticide scandal were sold in recent months to a distributor in Denmark, which in turn sold them to canteens, cafes and catering companies in the country.

She noted that there are rapid alert systems that should be used if consumers are at risk.

In Poland, Jan Bondar, a spokesman for the Chief Sanitary Inspectorate, said that an estimated 40,000 potentially contaminated eggs have been imported but were not sold to consumers.

Hong Kong's Centre for Food Safety (CFS) said last Friday it found two samples of eggs from the Netherlands to have exceeded local fipronil limits.

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