Eggs destroyed in Taipei as probe results come in

Source : Taipei Times (http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/taiwan/archives/2017/08/31/2003677509)

Staff writer, with CNA

egg

About 10,000 eggs yesterday were taken off store shelves in Taipei, after they were found to have come from a farm in Chiayi County where the insecticide fipronil was detected, the Taipei Department of Health said.

The recall came after the department on Tuesday received a report from its counterpart in the county that excessive traces of fipronil had been found in eggs from Tsai Chun-chieh Livestock Farm, which had been sent to a retailer in Taipei.

All the recalled eggs are to be shipped back to Chiayi County, where they will be destroyed, Food and Drug Division head Wang Ming-li (王明理) said.

Test samples from the Tsai farm and a livestock farm in Hsinchu County came after the Council of Agriculture last week completed an examination of 1,451 egg farms nationwide for possible fipronil contamination.

Concentrations of the toxic insecticide were found to exceed 5 parts-per-billion, or 0.005 milligrams per kg, the maximum residue limit set by the EU, the council said.

Taiwan follows EU standards.

The new finding bring the number of fipronil-affected farms to 45, the statement said, adding that those farms have been put under strict controls and prohibited from transporting any eggs off their premises.

The council launched an inspection of chicken farms across Taiwan on Aug. 20 as the fipronil scare came to light.

The insecticide has also contaminated eggs in Europe and South Korea. The use of fipronil in agriculture and food production is illegal in Europe.

The WHO considers fipronil to be “moderately toxic” to humans. Long-term exposure could cause damage to the kidneys, liver or thyroid gland.

The FDA is flip-flopping on its decision to let tea farmers use a worrisome chemical

CNA  Thursday, June 29, 2017, 3:12 pm TWN

Source : The China Post (http://www.chinapost.com.tw/taiwan/2017/06/29/499082/the-fda.htm)

TAIPEI, Taiwan — The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Thursday revoked its decision to tolerate fluopyram in tea, after its previous decision to permit residue of the fungicide stirred controversy.

 tea-plantation-tea-farm-tea-cameron-highlands

In line with the Council of Agriculture (COA) policy of allowing the use of a pesticide that is a mixture of fluopyram and trifloxystrobin on tea bushes, the FDA on March 15 announced that up to 6 ppm of fluopyram residue would be permitted.

The announcement immediately triggered an outcry, because fluopyram has been linked to thyroid and liver cancer in mice.

According to Pan Chih-kuan (潘志寬), head of the FDA’s Division of Food Safety, the FDA’s decision to revoke the tolerance for fluopyram was made to ease consumers’ concerns and avoid unnecessary misunderstanding.

The FDA and COA will reconsider the use of fluopyram and its residue limit and will strengthen communication with the public before a further decision is made, he said.

 

 

Novel Detection Methods in Food Safety

This topic was moderated by Hau-Yang Tsen, Ph.D. and Vivian Chi-Hua Wu, Ph.D. and featured five lectures.

 

Chien-Shun Chiou, Ph.D., Principal Investigator, Head of Central Regional Laboratory, Center for Research and Diagnostics, Centers for Disease Control, Taiwan discussed the development and application of molecular subtyping methods to surveil Salmonellosis in Taiwan, and shared findings that provided insight and understanding into an international salmonellosis outbreak through infant milk formula and accumulated large amount of PFGE and AST data that are useful in tracking the principal reservoirs for human salmonellosis and predicting Salmonella serotypes. Through the comparison of PFGE patterns with those in the database, findings indicated that pig is a principal reservoir for human salmonellosis in Taiwan and successfully predicted the serotypes for 99.4% of 862 Salmonella isolates collected in 2012.

 

Yao-Wen Huang, Ph.D., Professor, University of Georgia, USA discussed rapid detection of pathogens and toxins in the food system using surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) with silver nanorod array substrates. Dr. Huang noted that the use of aligned silver nanorod (AgNR) arrays prepared by oblique angle deposition (OAD), as surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) substrates to detect food safety related substances such as foodborne pathogens, toxins, pesticides, and adulteration agents. Six foodborne pathogenic bacteria including Salmonella enterica serotype Anatum, S. enterica serotype Cubana, S. enterica serotype Stanley, S. enteritidis, E. coli O157:H7 and S. epidermidis in mung bean sprouts were detected using functionalized substrates with vancomycin. Dr. Huang shared that the results show bacterial species and serotypes can be detected and differentiated at the limit of 100cfu/ml within four hours.

 

Vivian Chi-Hua Wu, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Food Science & Human Nutrition, University of Maine, USA discussed pathogen detection using biosensors and nanotechnology, and noted that a variety of rapid methods have been developed to detect and screen foodborne pathogens. These methods include antibody-based methods, such as immunofluorescence, immunoimmobilization, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, immunomagnetic separation, and nucleic acid-based methods such as hybridization and polymerase chain reaction [PCR], as well as biochemical and enzymatic methods such as miniaturized microbiological methods and commercial miniaturized diagnostic kits.

 

Hua-Yang Tsen, Ph.D., Professor and Dean, College of Human Ecology, Hungkuang University, Taiwan gave a presentation entitled, “Development and Use of Molecular Methods for the Detection of Food Pathogens, Virus, and Biological Species in Foods.” Dr. Tsen discussed various molecular detection techniques, such as polymerase chain reaction (PCR), multiplex PCR, DNA probes and biochips, real-time PCR (Q PCR), reverse transcription (RT) Q PCR, and insulated isothermal PCR (ii PCR), specific for the detection of different bacteria or biological species. Dr. Tsen noted that certain techniques have been established in order to trace the contamination origins of pathogenic strains and to conduct epidemiological study, including genotyping techniques such as PFGE, RAPD, MLST.

 

Tzann-Feng Lin, Ph.D., President, TTL, Taipei, Taiwan discussed systematic quality detection for functional foods, using the example of Monascus products. Dr. Lin shared study conclusions that Monascus TTL-123 is a suitable source ingredient for the production of Monascus health products, and emphasized that standardized safety analysis methods and understanding of functionality and beneficial effects are required for quality control of functional food products.

 

 

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The FDA is flip-flopping on its decision to let tea farmers use a worrisome chemical

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CNA  Thursday, June 29, 2017, 3:12 pm TWN Source : The China Post (http://www.chinapost.com.tw/taiwan/2017/06/29/499082/the-fda.htm) TAIPEI, Taiwan — The...

 

Novel Detection Methods in Food Safety

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