UK contaminated egg scandal 'poses no risk to Ireland'

Hong Kong enhances checks on eggs from Europe

Contaminated eggs scandal hit 15 EU states, besides Switzerland, Hong Kong: EC

Around 700,000 contaminated Dutch eggs went on sale in the United Kingdom - not 21,000 as previously thought.

Originally, the Food Standards Agency (FSA) said that only around 21,000 eggs were contaminated with Fipronil, which is thought to have entered the United Kingdom from Dutch producers, but this figure has now increased dramatically.

Products will be withdrawn due to the chemical's unauthorized status, rather than a specific safety concern.

At least 11 countries in Europe have found eggs contaminated with fipronil since the scare emerged on August 1.

The Public Health Lab, she added, is also in contact with other accredited foreign laboratories for the analysis of local and imported eggs for the presence of a toxic pesticide. However, UK egg farms are undergoing checks to ensure this is the case.

At least 700,000 eggs implicated in the fipronil scandal have been imported into the United Kingdom, far more than initial estimates, the Food Standards Agency has confirmed.

Some of the products made from these eggs will have had a short shelf life and will have already been consumed, however, those identified that are still within the expiry date are now being withdrawn by the businesses involve.

The substance can damage people's kidneys, liver and thyroid glands if eaten in large quantities.

The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine said it carries out tests on egg samples for fipronil as part of its annual residue testing programme.

However the Irish Food Safety Authority confirmed that in June, very small quantities of boiled eggs were supplied to nine catering outlets in Ireland.

Britain produces 85% of the eggs it consumes, but imports approximately two billion each year.

The Danish food administration have asked people to keep calm as they claim that eating the eggs bought by Danæg Products poses no risk in human consumption. The Netherlands closed 180 poultry farms as a result of the scare.

The two countries received eggs originating from affected poultry farms in Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany and France, it said.

Eggs, coming mainly from the Netherlands, were found to contain fipronil, a substance used to kill lice and ticks on animals that is banned by the European Union for use in the food industry.

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