Second batch of eggs from Malaysia recalled after salmonella bacteria detected

The affected batch can be identified by a stamp on the eggs that says "CEM014".
The affected batch can be identified by a stamp on the eggs that says "CEM014".PHOTO: SINGAPORE FOOD AGENCY

SINGAPORE - A batch of eggs from Malaysia has been recalled after the eggs were found to have been tainted by bacteria that may cause food poisoning.

It comes days after the same bacteria was found in eggs from another Malaysian farm.

The Singapore Food Agency (SFA) said on Friday (March 19) that it had detected the presence of Salmonella enteritidis in eggs imported from Linggi Agriculture in Malaysia.

The affected batch can be identified by a stamp on the eggs that says "CEM014".

As the bacteria may cause food-borne illness if the eggs are consumed raw or undercooked, the SFA said people who have bought the affected eggs are advised to cook them thoroughly, and to see a doctor if they feel ill after eating them.

The agency has also directed four importers here to recall the product as a precautionary measure. The firms are An Hong Egg Supplies, Chuan Huat Poultry Farm, Dasoon and FE Supply.

Linggi Agriculture has also been suspended until it has rectified the contamination.

While Salmonella enteritidis can survive in raw and undercooked eggs, the SFA said it can be destroyed by heat, so the affected eggs are safe to consume if they are cooked thoroughly.

The bacteria can cause illness, with symptoms such as diarrhoea, abdominal pain, fever, nausea and vomiting.

While the infection typically subsides within a week for most people, the bacteria can cause serious infection in the vulnerable such as the elderly, young children and those with weakened immunity.

The latest recall comes after an earlier batch of eggs from Lay Hong Berhad Layer Farm Jeram was recalled on March 12 due to the presence of the same bacteria.

The earlier batch of affected eggs had the farm code "CES008" on them and the farm involved has also been suspended.

Following the recall, Malaysia's Veterinary Services Department held an engagement session with Lay Hong's management and it agreed to implement frequent corrective and monitoring actions, as well as enhance biosecurity controls, the New Straits Times reported.

The firm later said that its other five farms in Jeram in Selangor had tested negative for the salmonella bacteria.

Separately, the SFA also recalled all batches of Sunflower Brand peanut powder made by Yiak Say Hang Food Industries on Friday.

The powder was found to have cancer-causing toxins that exceeded the legal limit.

The SFA also recalled all batches of Sunflower Brand peanut powder made by Yiak Say Hang Food Industries. PHOTO: SINGAPORE FOOD AGENCY

This was after the SFA had investigated peanut products manufactured by another firm, Li Kwong Agencies Co, following a recall of the latter's Instant Satay Spices seasoning product on Monday.

The SFA said Yiak Say Hang Food Industries' peanut powder product was made from a batch of powder sourced from Li Kwong Agencies Co.

It contained aflatoxins exceeding permitted levels and the firm has been directed to recall all batches of the powder, which is sold in 200g packets.

Investigations are ongoing for other peanut products manufactured by Li Kwong Agencies Co, the SFA added.

Besides causing cancer, aflatoxins, which are naturally occurring, can also lead to birth defects or mutations, and exposure through food should be kept as low as possible.

The toxins can occur in foods such as groundnuts, as a result of fungal contamination before and after harvest.

Those who have bought the affected peanut powder product are advised not to consume and those who have consumed it should seek medical advice if they are concerned about their health.

Those affected may experience gastrointestinal symptoms such as nausea, loss of appetite and abdominal pain, a family physician told The Straits Times previously.

Li Kwong Agencies Co earlier said that aflatoxin-causing fungi might have grown on the company's raw peanuts due to warm and humid conditions present during transportation of the cargo to Singapore.

The food manufacturer said it is working closely with SFA and intends to conduct more stringent tests and checks on its products.