EU audits – Vietnam not compliant for pesticide residues

pesticidesThis report describes the outcome of an audit in Vietnam carried out from 1 to 9 March 2017, as part of the published DG Health and Food Safety audit programme. The objectives of the audit were to assess controls on pesticide residues in fruit, vegetables, herbs and spices intended for export to the European Union (EU), and to follow-up on actions undertaken in response to recommendations of the previous audit, DG(SANCO)/2014-7177.

The report concludes that legislation and implementing procedures are in place to establish a control system for pesticides, but there were significant gaps with the implementation of official controls. Consequently, no effective pesticide control system for food exported to the EU is in place,, including those established by the EU. Some private controls are implemented by individual exporters of fruit and vegetables to the EU, which can contribute to compliance of their produce with EU maximum residue levels.

Some limited measures were taken by the competent authorities to address the recommendations of the previous audit DG(SANCO)/2014-7177, but overall very little progress has been made, and the recommendations had not been satisfactorily addressed.

(Source: EU DG Sante)

Food recalls in EU – Week 36/2015

After a summer break our weekly report is coming back. In the week 32-35 we had a couple of interesting and/or widespread alerts, followed by recalls from consumers, namely:

 Allergens: undeclared mustard in coriander cumin powder from India, following an official control on the market. Notified by United Kingdom, distributed also to France and Poland;

 Allergens: undeclared mustard in curry paste from the United Kingdom, following company’s own check. Notified by Ireland; (spices once again!)

– Allergens: too high content of gluten (80 mg/kg – ppm) in gluten-free barleygrass powder from China, following an official control on the market. Notified by United Kingdom, distributed also to Austria, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Germany, Ireland, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden.

This week on the EU RASFF (Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed) we can find:

1. Alerts followed by a recall from consumers:

Foreign bodies: glass fragments in jar containing pickled capers from Germany, following a consumer complaint. Notified by Germany, distributed also to Belgium and Luxembourg;

Foreign bodies: plastic fragments in branflakes from the United Kingdom, following company’s own check. Notified by United Kingdom, distributed also to Ireland;

– Pathogenic micro-organisms: Listeria monocytogenes (< 10 CFU/g) in chilled sandwich with ham and butter from France, following company’s own check. Notified by France, distributed also to Belgium

– Pathogenic micro-organisms: Salmonella (presence /25g) in chilled sausages from Belgium, following company’s own check. Notified by Belgium, distributed also to Luxembourg.

2. Information for attention/for follow up followed by a recall from consumers:

– Mycotoxins: aflatoxins (B1 = 565; Tot. = 613.6 µg/kg – ppb) in pistachios from Lebanon, following an official control on the market. Notified by Cyprus;

Pathogenic micro-organisms: Listeria monocytogenes (presence/25g) in chilled marinated grill ribs from Austria, following company’s own check. Notified by Austria, distributed also to Italy.

3. Alerts followed by a withdrawal from the market:

– Industrial contaminants: benzo(a)pyrene (7.8 µg/kg – ppb) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (calculated: 59.8 µg/kg – ppb) in pumpkin seed oil from Austria, following an official control on the market. Notified by Germany;

Pathogenic micro-organisms: Salmonella enteritidis (in 1 out of 12/25g) in chilled chicken breast fillets from Poland, following an official control on the market. Notified by Denmark.

4. Seizures:


5. Border rejections:

  • absence of certified analytical report for dried fig jam from Turkey
  • aflatoxins (B1 = 14.27; Tot. = 28.47 µg/kg – ppb) and ochratoxin A (85.25 µg/kg – ppb) in berbere spice mix from Ethiopia
  • aflatoxins (B1 = 15.8 µg/kg – ppb) in crushed chilli from India, via the United Arab Emirates
  • altered organoleptic characteristics of frozen boneless beef manufactured in Namibia, with raw material from South Africa
  • damaged packaging of canned skipjack tuna fillets (Katsuwonus [Euthynnus] pelamis) from Cape Verde
  • dimethoate (0.09 mg/kg – ppm) in pea pods from Kenya
  • dithiocarbamates (0.18 mg/kg – ppm) and unauthorised substance 3-hydroxycarbofuran (0.04 mg/kg – ppm) in dragon fruit from Vietnam
  • high content of lead (0.171 mg/kg – ppm) in mushrooms in brine from Vietnam and (4.68 mg/kg – ppm) in food supplement from India
  • mercury (1.19 mg/kg – ppm) in frozen swordfish (Xiphias gladius) from South Korea
  • mercury (1.83; 0.21 mg/kg – ppm) in food supplements from India
  • myclobutanil (0.21 mg/kg – ppm) in fresh mint from Morocco
  • poor temperature control – rupture of the cold chain – (clear signs of defrosting) of frozen croaker, cuttlefish and squid from India and poor temperature control of frozen shrimps (Penaeus vannamei) from Ecuador
  • prohibited substance nitrofuran (metabolite) nitrofurazone (SEM) (6.1 µg/kg – ppb) in dried casings from China
  • Salmonella (1 out of 5 samples /25g) in betel leves from India
  • Salmonella Lexington (in 5 out of 5 samples) in rapeseed cake from Belarus
  • unauthorised operator for chicken meat preparation (Gallus domesticus) from Saudi Arabia
  • unauthorised substance carbendazim (2.4 mg/kg – ppm) in dagon fruit from Vietnam
  • unauthorised substance sildenafil thiono analogue (18.8; 32.7 mg/kg – ppm) in food supplement from China
  • Vibrio (presence /25g) in frozen shrimps from Vietnam