Mon, Jun 20, 2011 - Page 2 News List

DEHP is found in Taiwanese snack in Macau: officials

Staff Writer, with CNA

A Taiwanese-made corn snack found by the Macau government to be tainted by an industrial chemical may have been contaminated by the plastic it was packed in, the Department of Health said.

Food and Drug Administration deputy director-general Hsu Ming-neng (許銘能) said the agency has asked the manufacturer to review its production processes and send the product for safety testing.

However, it will not order the snack to be pulled from shelves in Taiwan simply based on the test results of the Macau government, Hsu added.

Macau’s Government Information Bureau issued a statement on Friday saying that its Food Safety Coordination Group had detected 1.8 parts per million of di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, or DEHP, in a sample of the chocolate-flavored Kuai Kuai Corn Snack produced by Taiwan-based Kuai Kuai Co.

According to the statement, the discovery was made during a random check on supermarkets on Wednesday, and the group has asked that all 1,200 packs of the Kuai Kuai corn snack that were imported to Macau be recalled.

Hsu said that during his agency’s investigation, none of the ingredients in the snack were related to the food additives sold by Yu Shen Chemical Co, one of the two food suppliers that allegedly used the chemical as an ingredient in food additives, prompting a food safety scare in Taiwan.

Judging from the small amount of the chemical detected in Macau, the FDA’s experts believe it may have come from the snack’s plastic wrapper, released during shipment when the product was exposed to high heat, Hsu said.

DEHP is used primarily to make plastics more flexible. It has been at the heart of a food scare that erupted in Taiwan last month, when it was detected in a wide range of processed foods and beverages.

The issue has triggered concerns over food safety among both consumers in Taiwan and foreign importers of Taiwanese food and beverages.

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