TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Only one of the three farms in Changhua County sealed on suspicion of being the source of eggs which high dioxine levels is actually responsible, which means its 30,000 chickens will have to be culled and all its eggs destroyed, the Council of Agriculture announced Wednesday.
Eggs from the county’s township of Fangyuan showed a dioxin concentration of 5.2 picograms per gram, more than double the legal maximum level of 2.5 pg/g.
Three farms were sealed off and their products removed from shelves, but the results of an investigation by the Food and Drug Administration showed the source was only one of the farms, Hongzhang (鴻彰).
However, it was not possible to determine whether the dioxin contamination originated with the feed given to the chickens, as some earlier reports suggested, officials said.
A total of 7,798 kilograms of eggs had been removed from sale nationwide by 3 p.m. on Tuesday April 25, reports said.
The conclusion of the FDA investigation means that all chickens and eggs at Hongzhang will have to be incinerated to prevent them from reentering the food chain, while a continuous watch will be held on the type of animal feed and the soil used at the farm.
While the price of eggs has reportedly remained stable, sales figures have slowed down in some parts of the country, the COA said.
Dioxins include a diverse range of chemical compounds known for their toxicity. Consumption can damage the immune system, interfere with hormones, cause reproductive and developmental problems as well as cancer.