FOOD and Drug Administration (FDA) officials are cautioning the public about the possible entry of frozen processed food products from Japan, that had been recalled in that country last December for containing malathion pesticides.
The FDA cited the products from Japan-based company, Maruha Nichiro Holdings (MNH), not registered with the Japan FDA, which last year started recalling 6.4 million packages of assorted frozen foods after being proved to contain toxic pesticides.
Because of this, the FDA asked the Bureau of Customs (BOC) to remain vigilant in guarding the “Philippine borders against the illegal entry of unregistered products, including contaminated and substandard food products.”
“Only FDA-registered processed food products imported by FDA-licensed food distributors should be allowed entry in the country,” it added.
The agency also said that its regulation officers are now checking whether the products may have entered the country illegally and are being sold in groceries and supermarkets.
“As per FDA record, neither an FDA-licensed distributor is importing the said products from Japan nor any products is registered with the Philippine FDA,” it said.
The FDA said its teams have instructions to “confiscate all unregistered processed food products from Japan in outlets or in possession by individuals.”
The Japan’s Health Ministry reportedly confirmed 556 people getting sick after eating Maruha products.
The FDA is also going after an unregistered health product, the called slimming underwear.
In its Advisory 2014-005, the FDA warned against the “Onami” slimming underwear products that claim to detoxify the body and burn fats.
“All consumers are hereby warned against buying the said unregistered product from the market or through online,” FDA head Kenneth Hartigan-Go said.
He said the FDA’s monitoring showed the product is being advertised to have benefits as it will detoxify the body and burn fats, strengthen the immune system, boost metabolism, increase mental alertness, reduce fatigue and stress, reduce aches and pains, and prevent body odors.
Ritchie A. Horario