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Portugal safe from contaminated eggs

Portugal safe from contaminated eggs

A KFDA official said, "No eggs from the Netherlands have been imported, and the expiry dates of European chicken imports have passed, so we only issued a temporary ban on the distribution and sales of processed egg products from Europe".

Eggs contaminated with insecticide fipronil have been found across 15 European Union countries as well as Hong Kong and Switzerland, sparking a row over how long Belgian and Dutch authorities have known about the contamination.

The European Commissioner in charge of food safety called Friday for an emergency meeting of ministers to discuss eggs contamination, appealing for an end to finger-pointing among member states over the scandal.

The contaminated eggs are a priori limited risks to the health of the consumer, since the doses of fipronil potentially ingested remain largely below the amounts considered harmful.

But it did say that all egg imports undergo "periodic analysis and inspection" at ministry food laboratories, and now meet all approved standards. While in some European countries eggs containing Fipronil residues have been sold as fresh eggs, in the United Kingdom this is not the case. For animals destined for the food chain, it is forbidden because it may damage the human liver, thyroid and kidney.

Items sold at Waitrose, Sainsbury's, Asda and Morrisons are some of the affected products, the Food Standards Agency said.

The FSA said investigations into the Fipronil incident in Europe suggested it was "very unlikely" that the eggs posed a risk to public health.

The current scare has many retailers pulling the toxic eggs from shelves, despite them not being a major health threat, reports News.com.au.

It insisted there is "no need" for people to stop eating eggs.

Dutch police have arrested two people suspected of using fipronil.

Dutch authorities knew as far back as November that some eggs in the country were contaminated with an insecticide and they failed to notify their European partners at the time, Belgium's agriculture minister has said.

Millions of eggs have been pulled from supermarket shelves in Germany as well as Belgium and the Netherlands.

More than 100 poultry farms have been closed during the investigation, and 26 suspects identified and evidence seized from their companies. The BBC adds that "a criminal investigation is under way in Belgium and the Netherlands, centring on two firms - Poultry Vision, a pest control firm from Belgium, which is alleged to have sold the treatment to a Dutch poultry farm cleaning company, Chickfriend".