CFS finds traces of malachite green in grass carp sample

‚ÄčThe Centre for Food Safety (CFS) of the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department today (May 23) announced that a trace amount of malachite green was found in a grass carp sample. Follow-up is in progress.
     
A CFS spokesman said, "The CFS collected the abovementioned grass carp sample from a fresh provision shop in Wong Tai Sin for testing under its routine Food Surveillance Programme. The test result showed that the sample contained a trace amount of malachite green at a level of 2.4 parts per billion.
     
"The CFS has informed the vendor concerned of the irregularity and instructed it to stop sale of the affected product," the spokesman added.
     
Malachite green is a type of industrial dye and has been used for treating infections in fish. Malachite green is possibly both genotoxic and carcinogenic. According to the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA), there is no safe level of residues of malachite green or its metabolites in food that represents an acceptable risk to consumers, and competent authorities should prevent residues of malachite green in food. Major agricultural economies such as the Mainland, the European Union, Canada and the United States prohibit the use of the chemical in food fish. According to the Harmful Substances in Food Regulations (Cap 132AF), no food sold in Hong Kong is allowed to contain malachite green. Offenders will be prosecuted and will be liable to a fine of $50,000 and to imprisonment for six months upon conviction.
     
The CFS will continue to follow up on the incident and take appropriate action, including tracing the source of the affected product. Investigation is ongoing.
 
Ends/Thursday, May 23, 2019