Aug 31, 2021 / 15:27

Vietnamese Prime Minister requires report on Irish recall of instant noodles containing EO

Two products of Acecook Vietnam JSC were recalled by the Food Safety Authority of Ireland.

The Ministry of Industry and Trade is required to explain Ireland’s requisition of instant noodles containing ethylene oxide (EO) exported to the European country to the Prime Minister before September 7.

 Hao Hao instant noodles of Acecook Vietnam are sold on Amazon. Screenshot: Phi Khanh

"The Government Office has requested the Ministry of Industry and Trade to review the case and report the outcome to the Prime Minister," the document stated on August 30.

On August 20, the Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) issued a notice saying they seized a number of batches of instant noodles containing EO, namely Hao Hao noodles with sour and spicy shrimp flavor and Good vermicelli produced by Acecook Vietnam.

“Certain batches of instant noodle products are being recalled due to the presence of the unauthorized pesticide ethylene oxide. This pesticide is not authorized for use in food sold in the EU,” the FSAI wrote. 

“Although the consumption of the contaminated product does not pose an acute risk to health, there may be health issues if there is the continued consumption of ethylene oxide over a long period of time. Therefore, exposure to this substance needs to be minimized. Point-of-sale recall notices will be displayed in stores supplied with the implicated batches.” 

The Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) said it requested Acecook Vietnam to urgently report on the production process and its products made for domestic consumption and for export.

“EO is not on the list of substances subject to maximum limits of pesticide residues in food under Circular No. 50 of the Ministry of Health,” the MoIT noted.

The MoIT also asked functional units to check the entire list of products domestically distributed by the Japanese food maker, clarifying the production process and identifying violations (if any) in order to protect Vietnamese consumers' interests.

On August 29, Acecook Vietnam announced that they recalled batches are for export, not for the Vietnamese market. 

“We absolutely comply with the regulations of Vietnam, Europe, Japan, Australia and New Zealand on not using EO in any stage of raw material preservation and subsequent production and storage,” the company noted. “Our products are safe for Vietnamese consumers.”

The Vietnam Food Administration, on August 28, also received a warning from the European Union about the recall of dried noodles with chicken and beef flavors manufactured by Ho Chi Minh City-based Thien Huong Food JSC for containing EO, which are exported to Norway. The company also was requested to urgently report to the MoIT.