After Singapore, Hong Kong Bans Sale Of MDH, Everest Spices Alleging Presence Of Cancer-Causing Chemicals

After Singapore, Hong Kong Bans Sale Of MDH, Everest Spices Alleging Presence Of Cancer-Causing Chemicals

This isn't the first instance of an Indian spice brand facing regulatory action overseas. In 2023, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) ordered a recall of Everest Food Products following positive tests for Salmonella contamination.

Rahul MUpdated: Monday, April 22, 2024, 02:25 PM IST
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After Singapore, Hong Kong has banned the sale of popular Indian spice brands MDH Pvt. and Everest Food Products Pvt. due to the alleged presence of the carcinogenic pesticide ethylene oxide in several spice mixes. 

The Centre For Food Safety of The Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region reported on April 5 that routine surveillance programs identified ethylene oxide in three spice mixes from MDH Group namely Sambhar Masala Powder, Madras Curry Powder, and Curry Powder. 

"The CFS collected the above-mentioned samples from three retail outlets in Tsim Sha Tsui respectively for testing under its routine Food Surveillance Programme. The test results showed that the samples contained a pesticide, ethylene oxide. The CFS has informed the vendors concerned of the irregularities and instructed them to stop sale and remove from shelves the affected products," the regulatory body said in a statement.

"Significant health risks"

Similarly, Everest Group's Fish Curry Masala was found to contain the pesticide. Ethylene oxide, labeled as a Group 1 carcinogen by the International Agency for Research on Cancer, poses significant health risks, including an increased risk of breast cancer.

In response to these findings, both Hong Kong and Singapore have taken measures to safeguard public health.

Singapore has recalled Everest's products from its shelves due to the presence of pesticides exceeding safe levels.

This isn't the first time that an Indian spice brand is facing regulatory action overseas. In 2023, the US Food and Drug Administration ordered a recall of Everest Food Products following positive tests for Salmonella contamination.

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