Test results on pig innards due by end of month: DOH

TAIPEI - Amid growing concerns about a banned veterinary drug used on pigs, the Department of Health (DOH) has said that local health officials have collected 40 samples of pig innards from traditional markets and that test results are due by the end of the month.
calendar icon 6 August 2007
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Two shipments of imported US pork were recently found to contain ractopamine hydrochloride, known by the brand name paylean, prompting the Bureau of Food Safety under the DOH to instruct local health officials July 20 to collect pork samples for testing.

The DOH demanded a further 40 samples of pig innards July 31.

The Bureau of Food and Drug Analysis under the DOH completed tests on the first 43 samples and announced a day earlier that three of them contained paylean.

Cheng Huei-wen, director-general of the DOH Bureau of Food Safety, said the residual levels of paylean in the three samples were relatively small and that the public need not be alarmed.

Paylean is listed by the Council of Agriculture as a banned veterinary drug, but it is allowed in the United States and some other countries.

Cheng also said that if paylean is used during the growing period of pigs, residue of the banned drug in pig innards would be many times higher than that otherwise found in pork.

But as innards usually require more elaborate processing before testing, the results will not be known until the end of the month, Cheng said.

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