A Food and Drug Administration (FDA) inspection of meat and poultry products found residues of the chemical nicarbazin in two types of chicken egg products and one type of duck egg product.
The agency conducted the random inspection of 118 meat or poultry products at wholesale markets, egg farms, hyperrmarkets and supermarkets between March and May, testing for 126 types of drugs used on animals.
The products tested included 15 pork products, 20 meatball products, 42 chicken egg products, 16 duck egg products, 20 cow milk products and five goat milk products.
FDA Central Center for Regional Administration official Chen Tzu-ling (陳姿伶) said the affected chicken egg products were from Yu Chuan Farm (宇泉牧場) and Chang Hsiung Farm (章雄畜牧場), both in Pingtung County; and the duck eggs were from Hsing Lung Farm (興隆畜牧場) in Taichung.
Nicarbazin is a legal feed additive that contains a veterinary drug of a low toxicity, but it can cause harm to the kidneys if the concentration is high, the FDA said.
Council of Agriculture regulations stipulate that nicarbazin with a concentration between 100 parts per million (ppm) and 200ppm can be added to chicken feed, but chickens cannot be fed with nicarbazin within five days before products are brought to market and that feed containing nicarbazin cannot be given to egg-producing hens, the FDA said.
Chen said 2,732 eggs containing nicarbazin residue have been recalled and destroyed, and the farms could be fined between NT$60,000 and NT$200 million (US$1,874 and US$624,531), according to the Act Governing Food Safety and Sanitation (食品安全衛生管理法).
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