Fish products should be sold with clear labels

The Centre for Food Safety (CFS) today (January 23) advised the trade to label clearly fish and fish products on sale for the public's easy identification.

This followed recent complaints made to the CFS about oily diarrhoea after the consumption of codfish. The symptoms are suspected to be related to the presence of indigestible wax ester in oilfish (Lepidocybium flavobrunneum and Ruvettus pretiosus).

"In follow-up investigations by CFS, the fish in question was believed to be oilfish marketed as codfish. They were all bought from PARKnSHOP stores.

"Overseas studies found that consumption of oilfish may cause oily diarrhoea in some people. As such, it is not advisable to use oilfish for catering purposes," the spokesman said.

He added: "The concerned retailer has already stopped selling the fish products in question. CFS has also informed the trade about the situation. Caterers and food manufacturers should obtain their fish supplies from reliable sources and check the fish type.

"CFS has also notified the relevant parties, including the Department of Health and the Hospital Authority, for follow-up action where necessary.

"We are now following up with the retailer concerning the source of the oilfish and labelling issues."

Ends/Tuesday, January 23, 2007