Safety First: India food adulteration, Capilano honey, Taiwan's continued ban on Japan 'nuclear food' and more feature in our food safety round-up

By Pearly Neo

- Last updated on GMT

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has declared milk in India to be ‘largely safe’. ©Getty Images
The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has declared milk in India to be ‘largely safe’. ©Getty Images

Related tags Safety Fssai Glyphosate Australia Taiwan Japan

India milk adulteration and glyphosate contamination, Capilano honey, Taiwan's continued ban on Japan 'nuclear food' and more feature in this edition of Safety First.

India’s dairy dispute: FSSAI insists milk contamination is ‘not serious at all’

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has declared milk in India to be ‘largely safe’​ following reports from its 2018 National Milk Quality Survey, holding ‘poor farm practices’​ responsible for current contaminations.

“[In] a large number (6432) of samples, very few samples were found to be adulterated. […] Slightly less than 10% samples had contaminants coming mainly from poor farm practices. Over 90% of the samples were found safe in the survey,”​ said FSSAI via its official press release on the matter.

The agency has also described this survey to be ‘by far the largest systematic survey’​ in terms of sample size and parameters tested, although it only covered liquid milk and not milk products.

FSSAI also claimed that of all the samples tested, only 12 were adulterated, and less than 10% contained pesticide, antibiotic, aflatoxin or ammonium sulphate residues.

"We can't proceed": ACCC adulterated honey investigation into Capilano loses sting as testing methods found to be 'unreliable'

The Australian Consumer and Competition Commission (ACCC) has 'concluded' its investigation into Capilano​ over purportedly adulterated honey being sold in Australia, due to 'testing uncertainty'.

According to the ACCC in an official statement, they ‘did not uncover any other evidence that supported the allegation Capilano’s ‘Allowrie’ honey was adulterated with sugar syrup’​ apart from the controversial Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) testing that first kicked off the investigation​.

“The investigation followed allegations in the media that a number of honey products [including Capilano] honey, labelled ‘pure’ and ‘100% honey’ were adulterated with sugar syrup,”​ they added.

“The allegations were based on results [from NMR testing, which] has only recently emerged as a testing method for honey adulteration.

“The ACCC is advised NMR testing is not yet reliable enough to determine whether honey is adulterated and therefore should not be used as a basis to support legal action.”

Drinking bottled water does not cause health problems: Abu Dhabi authority

The Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority has addressed public fear related to consumption of bottled water​.

A video circulated on social media recently claimed that drinking bottled water will lead to a host of health problems, including fatigue, headaches, and compromising the immune system.

In response to public concerns, the authority confirmed that all brands of bottled water on sale in the market were safe for human consumption, local media Gulf News​ reported.  

The authority said that the manufacturers have declared all ingredients used and have complied with the UAE’s labelling regulations.

FSSAI declares imported pulses and beans ‘safe’ amidst activist protests of ‘toxic chemical lobby’ influence

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has declared all imported pulses and beans to be ‘safe’ from glyphosate contamination​, despite activist protests concerning a lack of transparency and accusations of influence from the ‘toxic chemical lobby’.

“Pulses and beans imported into India are safe. There is no concern regarding the presence of glyphosate in these commodities,” ​said the official FSSAI release on the matter.

“This is based on results of testing of these products over the past one month [since] FSSAI instructed its import offices at ports to start monitoring for presence of glyphosate for pulses and beans last month.”

Last month, FSSAI ordered the testing, monitoring and sharing of data​ with headquarters every 15 days, with regard to the presence of glyphosate in imported pulses.

Taiwan could pay ‘grave price’ after voting to continue ban on Japanese ‘nuclear food’

Taiwan could see a step back in diplomatic relations with Japan after the country voted to continue banning so-called ‘nuclear food’ coming from the Fukushima region​ in a referendum last week, as top Japanese officials expressed disappointment over the result.

According to the Taiwan Central Election Commission website, 7.79 million out of 19.76 million eligible voters voted to continue the ban.

This makes up a total of 39.4%, more than enough to pass the 25% turnout required to ensure the result is legally binding. Only 2.23 million voters voted to discontinue the ban.

The referendum was confirmed to proceed earlier this year​ alongside local elections after fervent ‘anti-nuclear food’ campaigning by opposition party Kuomintang

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