Wed, Jul 01, 2009 - Page 2 News List

DOH tests fast-food cooking oil

ACID TEST When the Department of Health checked 23 restaurants in Kaohsiung County, it found that four were using cooking oil that failed acid value testing

By Jimmy Chuang  /  STAFF REPORTER

The cooking oil at a McDonald’s in Penghu failed the Department of Health’s (DOH) acid value test yesterday, but most other chain food restaurants passed.

The tests were carried out after media reports last week said that many fast food restaurants used the same oil for more than a week, which can lead to build up of carcinogens. The acid value is an indicator of whether the composition of the oil has changed because of repeated use.

While the DOH continued to ask inspectors from local Bureaus of Health to carry out tests at fast food restaurants, inspectors yesterday finished testing 16 restaurants in Keelung, 10 in Yunlin County, two in Chiayi County, 23 in Kaohsiung County and 11 in Penghu.

Penghu County Bureau of Health Director Cheng Hung-yi (鄭鴻藝) told the Taipei Times that McDonald’s was the only restaurant tested on the island that failed the test.

“Most people thought oil at fast food restaurants would be cleaner than food stalls. Well, the result of our tests yesterday tell a different story,” Cheng said.

The director said that inspectors carried out tests at two fast food restaurants and another 40 food stalls on Monday, but only McDonald’s had failed.

Penghu inspectors said they would return to McDonald’s for a second test “in the near future.”

Kaohsiung County inspectors also finished testing 23 fast food restaurants. Among the 23, four — in Fengshan City (鳳山), Luchu Township (路竹), Gangshan Township (岡山) and Hunei Township (湖內) — failed the test.

Kaohsiung County Bureau of Health said that inspectors would return to the four restaurants today and fine them between NT$60,000 and NT$300,000 if they failed the test again.

Keelung’s Bureau of Health said its inspectors had visited and tested cooking oil at 16 fast food restaurants, including KFC, McDonald’s, MOS Burger, Burger King, Pizza Hut, Dominos Pizza, TKK Fried Chicken and Napoli Pizza in the city yesterday. All of their cooking oil passed the test.

In Yunlin County, all 10 restaurants tested passed the test.

“Now that we finished fast food restaurants, we will continue by testing fried chicken booths in the county,” said Wu Ying-lang (吳英郎), head for the Yunlin County Bureau of Health’s Food Safety Division.

Chiayi County’s Bureau of Health Food Safety Division head Wu Mei-ying (吳美英) said there were few fast food restaurants in the area, but that it would be a major task for them to complete tests on booths for fried seafood in Budai Township (布袋) and Tungshih Township (東石), for which the areas are famous.

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