London: Around 700,000 eggs are believed to be contaminated in Dutch farms and have been distributed to Britain in the recent days. Some have reportedly being consumed as well.
The Food Standards Agency previously said a total of 21,000 eggs contaminated with a chemical called Fipronil had come from the Netherlands to the UK. In large quantities, fipronil, is considered to be “moderately hazardous” according to the World Health Organisation, and can have dangerous affects on people’s kidneys, liver and thyroid glands.
Asda, Morrisons and Sainsbury’s are all urgently recalling fresh salads, sandwiches and fillers which contain the infected eggs.
Fresh eggs are largely unaffected, with contaminated eggs instead present in processed foods in which they are one ingredient among many others, mostly used in sandwich fillings or other chilled foods.
The eggs were imported to the UK between March and June, the Food Standards Agency said.
A spokesman admitted that the infected products would no longer be within their expiry date, meaning they would have already been eaten.
The FSA insisted there was “unlikely” to be a risk to public health but admitted it was still investigating the distribution of the eggs.
An FSA spokesman said: “The decision to withdraw these products is not due to food safety concerns, but is based on the fact that Fipronil is not authorised for use in food producing animals. The Food Standards Agency and Food Standards Scotland are committed to ensuring that food is safe, and that UK consumers have food they can trust.”
Aldi and Lidl stores in Germany have already taken millions of eggs off shelves amid fears they are tainted with traces of the pesticide Fipronil.