What's new ? - 2018

What's new ? - 2018

Residues of fipronil and other acaricides in chicken eggs

EFSA 9 May, 2018

Following the detection of fipronil residues in eggs resulting from a misuse of non-approved veterinary medicinal products in poultry farms against red mites, an ad-hoc monitoring programme was set up in the EU. Member States have provided results for 5,439 samples of eggs and chicken muscle/fat which were analysed for fipronil and a number of additional active substances which were proposed by the European Commission to be monitored in view of potential misuse in poultry farms against red mites.
The European Commission requested the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) for technical assistance in the framework of Article 31 of Regulation (EC) No 178/2002 to set up the ad-hoc data collection and to summarise the results of the ad-hoc monitoring programme in a scientific report. The major purpose of the ad-hoc monitoring programme was to get a comprehensive view on the contamination of eggs and poultry products related to illegal uses of acaricides. Member States were requested to take samples of chicken eggs, chicken fat and muscle between 1 September and 30 November 2017, to analyse them for fipronil and additional acaricides and to report the results to EFSA.
The information provided by Member States and Iceland was analysed as requested by the European Commission with regard to the number and percentage of samples with residues below/at or above the Limit of Quantification (LOQ) and the number and percentage of samples with residues below or at the European Union Maximum Residue Level (EU MRL)/above the EU MRL. Overall, results for 5,439 samples were submitted to EFSA from the sampling period 1 September 2017 to 30 November 2017, covering in total 53,655 individual determinations. Among these samples, 742 samples contained residues exceeding the legal limit (i.e. above the MRL). MRL exceedances were almost exclusively related to fipronil and were associated with unprocessed chicken eggs (601 samples), fat of laying hens (134 samples), muscle of laying hens (5 samples) as well as dried egg powder (2 samples). Samples that exceeded the legal limit originated from the Netherlands (664 samples), Italy (40 samples), Germany (13 samples), Poland (11 samples), Hungary (6 samples), France (5 samples), Slovenia (2 samples) and Greece (1 sample). Among the 66 substances that were recommended to be analysed in the framework of the ad-hoc monitoring programme, the only substances found in quantifiable concentrations were fipronil (915 determinations) and amitraz (2 determinations).