Tuesday, 22 August 2017

the Dutch egg contamination scandal


Fipronil
Synonyms: 5-Amino-1-[2,6-dichloro-4-(trifluoromethyl)phenyl]-4-[(trifluoromethyl)sulfinyl]-1H-pyrazole-3-carbonitrile; (+/-)-Fipronil; 1-(2,6-Dichloro-4-trifluoromethylphenyl)-3-cyano-5-amino-4-(trifluoromethylsulfinyl)pyrazole; Fluocyanobenpyrazole; Frontline Spot-on; Frontline Spray; Frontline Top Spot; Goliath gel; Granedo MC; Grenade MC; Maxforce FC; Maxforce FC Select Roach Killer Bait Gel; Over’n Out; Regent; Regent TS; Termidor; Termidor 80WG; TopChoice;



Around 700,000 potentially contaminated eggs have been imported into Britain from Dutch farms, according to the Food Standards Agency.
The affected eggs have been contaminated with an insecticide called Fipronil.

Where did the eggs come from and how did they become contaminated?
A The affected eggs originate from around 180 farms in the Netherlands that bought poultry from a supplier which used an illegal insecticide to treat red mite in chickens. The chemical, called fipronil, is not authorised for use as a veterinary medicine or pesticide around food producing animals as it can make its way into birds and eggs.
The egg in these foods may have been supplied from affected farms in the Netherlands before the blocks on these farms were imposed. It was incorporated into processed foods; fresh eggs on sale in the UK remain unaffected. Most of the additional egg products that have been identified were imported into the UK in liquid form so it is no longer practicable to provide a figure in terms of whole eggs, however, it remains the case that the egg we have identified represents only a fraction of a single percentage of the eggs we consume in the UK every year.
85% of the eggs we eat in the UK are laid here. As a precaution, UK eggs are being tested for the presence of Fipronil, and all initial results have been clear.

What is fipronil and is it harmful to humans?
Fipronil is a popular pesticide, often used to de-flea household pets such as dogs and cats. It is also effective at treating red lice, which are commonly found in poultry.
The World Health Organization (WHO) says fipronil is "moderately toxic" to people if it is eaten in large quantities, and can have dangerous effects on the kidneys, liver and thyroid glands.
It can also cause "nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, dizziness, and epileptic seizures," says the Dutch food standards agency NVWA, although its effects are reversible.
Exposure to Fipronil can cause nausea, vomiting, headaches and dizziness. Long-term exposure to great quantities can cause thyroid, liver and kidney damage, and even lead to seizures.

= = =
Questions risen:
1. what penalties have been imposed to the Dutch (?) (only Dutch?) companies that started the scare?
2. What has happened to the birds that had produced these eggs?
3. How much fipronil has been actually applied to the birds? 

Ioannis Zabetakis

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