Dutch police arrest 2 suspects over egg scandal

Two suspects were arrested by Dutch police yesterday, August 10, over the recent egg scandal, according to Reuters.

The arrests occurred as a result of an investigation into the illegal use of a potentially harmful insecticide in the poultry industry, it added.

In light of this recent scandal, millions of chicken eggs have been pulled from European supermarket shelves.

It has also been reported that hundreds of thousands – and possibly millions – of hens could possibly need to be culled in the Netherlands as a result of the scare over the use of the insecticide fipronil.

According to Reuters, Dutch prosecutors conducted raids at eight different locations in the Netherlands and Belgium – confiscating cars as well as seizing bank accounts and real estate in the process.

The two suspects arrested were directors at the Dutch company Chickfriend, the company at the centre of the entire scandal, Reuters added.

Raids were reportedly carried out at locations linked to the company, which allegedly used the pesticide, as well as some of its potential suppliers.

Reuters explained that fipronil is a popular insecticide used to treat pets for fleas and ticks, but it is forbidden for use in the food chain.

The World Health Organization considers fipronil to be moderately toxic and it says very large quantities can cause organ damage.

Traceability on the eggs from the Netherlands contaminated with fipronil is continuing, according to the Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI).

The FSAI confirmed that very small quantities of boiled eggs were supplied to nine catering outlets in Ireland in June – these eggs had a ‘use-by’ date of July 17 and are no longer available.

Similarly, early last month, a small quantity of liquid pasteurised egg – with a ‘use-by’ date of July 20 – was supplied to a number of food businesses for use in bakery products, the FSAI added.

All of the food businesses concerned have reportedly been contacted and any remaining products have been removed from sale.

The number of eggs or egg products imported is very small. The risk to consumer health is very low.

“Nevertheless, the FSAI will continue to trace any distribution in Ireland. Further updates will be provided as necessary,” the authority concluded.

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