2017-08-10 13:36:15 UTC
Around 700,000 eggs implicated in a contamination scare have been distributed to Britain and may have already been eaten by consumers, it has emerged.
The Food Standards Agency previously said a total of 21,000 eggs contaminated with a chemical called fipronil had come from the Netherlands to the UK, but today substantially revised its estimate.
In large quantities, fipronil, is considered to be "moderately hazardous" according to the World Health Organisation, and can have dangerous affects on people's kidneys, liver and thyroid glands.
Asda, Morrisons and Sainsbury's are all urgently recalling millions of fresh salads, sandwiches and fillers which contain the infected eggs
[should be 'affected' or 'contaminated' eggs.]
Dutch investigators have detained two men suspected of being involved in the illegal use of pesticide at poultry farms that sparked a massive food safety scare in several countries.
Dutch prosecutors said in a statement that the two men detained during a series of raids are directors of a company that allegedly used Fipronil in egg farms.
Though no one has been reported as falling sick, prosecutors said there is evidence that public health has been threatened by "the delivery or application of the biocide Fipronil in poultry houses in the egg sector."
The raids in the Netherlands were carried out as part of a joint action with Belgian authorities.
Millions of eggs have been pulled from supermarket shelves in Germany as well as Belgium and the Netherlands.
Aldi and Lidl stores in Germany have already taken millions of eggs off shelves amid fears they are tainted with traces of the pesticide Fipronil.
A spokesman at the British Egg Industry Council said: "All major UK retailers stock British Lion shell eggs and tests have shown that there is no risk from British eggs.
"Most eggs imported into the UK are used by caterers, or are processed for food manufacturers and other businesses for use in products with eggs as an ingredient.
"Food manufacturers, retailers and caterers using processed egg should look for egg products produced within the British Lion Egg Products scheme. This guarantees that they will have been made using British Lion eggs, produced to the highest standards of food safety."