UPDATE: 11 August 2017
The number of contaminated eggs in the UK is much greater than previously thought leading to four supermarkets removing more egg-related products from their shelves.
The Food Standards Agency have stated that approximately 700,000 eggs from Dutch farms connected to the use of the toxic chemical, fipronil, have been distributed to Britain. This is in stark contrast to the 21,000 eggs first predicted.
Sainsbury's, Morrisons, Waitrose and Asda have removed 11 egg-based products from sale as a precaution, Metro reports. See the full list below.
Products removed from sale
Ham and Egg Salad – 240g – August 9-14
Potato and Egg Salad – 300g – August 9-14
Potato and Egg Salad – 250g – August 13
Egg and Cress Sandwich – Sold in Morrisons Cafe only – August 11
Cafe Sandwich Selection – Sold in Morrisons Cafe only – August 11
Free Range Egg Mayonnaise Deli Filler – 240g – August 13-16
Free Range Reduced Fat Egg Mayonnaise Deli Filler – 170g – August 14
Free Range Egg and Bacon Deli Filler – 170g – August 14- 16
Baby potato and free range egg salad – 270g – August 9-14
Spinach and free range egg snack pot – 110g – August 9-13
FTG Ham and Cheddar ploughman's salad bowl – 320g – Aug 9-13
Though the supermarkets have taken action, the FSA have said there is very little risk to public health.
What is fipronil?
It's a pesticide used to kill fleas and ticks by targeting the insect's central nervous system. Its use is banned in food products.
Is it dangerous?
If ingested by humans in toxic quantities, symptoms include sweating, nausea, vomiting, headache, abdominal pain, dizziness, agitation, weakness, and brain seizures. In large doses it can lead to organ failure.
ORIGINAL STORY: 8 August 2017
Eggs on sale in the UK could be contaminated with a harmful pesticide, EU authorities have warned.
Traces of the toxic chemical, fipronil, which is potentially harmful to humans was found in Germany and the Netherlands last weekend, and may have been distributed in the UK.
The EU authorities have alerted food safety organisations in Britain, Sweden, Switzerland and France as the contaminated eggs may have reached these areas.
Millions of eggs have been pulled from the shelves in supermarkets in several EU countries, including Aldi and Lidl stores, and Dutch farmers are expected to cull millions of hens over the scare.
However, UK consumers have been told not to panic as the Food Standards Agency asserted that only a very small number of eggs sold in Britain have been sprayed with the insecticide. Supermarket chain Aldi has also reassured that all of the eggs sold in their UK stores are produced in Britain.
Though fipronil is labelled as moderately toxic by the World Health Organisation and in large measures can lead to organ damage, the risk to the UK public is very low.
Commission spokeswoman Anna-Kaisa Itkonen told Metro that the aim was "to share the information so that everybody knows that it's now also up to the Swedish, Swiss, French and the UK national authorities to check."
According to reports, the spread of the insecticide was started by a cleaning products supplier in the Netherlands. Investigations are currently being carried out into how the chemical came into contact with the chickens.
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