Dutch polluted eggs & Organic mistrust
In the last days, we have experienced an egg scandal in Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany. The news spreading fast like cheats during final exams, like a word of mouth hot topic. We all heard about the Fipronil polluted eggs, and if not, some probably deduced it from the absence of eggs at the markets and supermarkets.
If you really have no idea about it and have been consuming eggs these days, then go to this website and make sure your eggs don’t fall in these categories.
Several poultry farms in the Netherlands used this insecticide to protect chickens from fleas, mites and ticks, which somehow appeared in the final product, eggs. There is an ongoing investigation to determine how this substance reached the eggs and who are the responsible of this health threat and tremendous food waste. Terrible news and frightened people everywhere wondering whether they consumed polluted eggs or not, but anyway the experts are already carrying out the proper investigations. I am not here to replicate news, you can find them easily.
What I want to share and what this event triggered in me is a series of questions on the current food supply chain. First of all, what a waste!!… more than one million eggs tossed away even when maybe half of that or more were perfectly fine without insecticide, but that is part of prevention right? Better to ensure health than risking people’s health. I agree.
Now, is amazing the capacity to produce large amounts of food in reduced areas, making more efficient the production. It is also amazing the ability to trade products with neighbouring countries. But it is also amazing that the higher you climb, the harder you will hit the ground, and the bigger your food network, the bigger the threat. Of course, there is always food safety department to keep threats under control but we know that it is impossible to keep this control at a 100%. As I see it, this is translated in a seriously big weak point in the current food chain and I wonder what would have happened If these 180 poultry farms (that by the way are now closed suffering the consequences) were less dependent on the same food chain and each one would have had its own risk prevention methods, different supplier or simply less risky treatments for their animals…maybe the impact would have been waaaaaay less? (Give your opinion in the comments below).
If you are a regular egg consumer, by now you will be thinking “Well, those were for sure conventional eggs because they allowed treatments with insecticide, so organic eggs should be fine”. Sorry to disappoint you but nobody can ensure that. It turns out that organic eggs were also removed from the shelves of supermarkets (I witnessed it myself). HOW CAN THIS BE??? Isn't it that organic means no insecticides? A supermarket stated “This is merely precaution; there is no reason to assume there are any health risks”. So we can’t know for sure if the organic eggs were removed because they were polluted or just for “precaution”. If this last is the case, then they are saying (in between the lines) that organic products are also exposed and can’t be guaranteed as safe. Should we not trust in organic any more? Or is it a stupid precautionary excuse that leads to unnecessary increased food waste? Do you agree or disagree? What are your thoughts on the current food chain? And what do you think about the egg scandal? Does this issue changes your perceptions and trust in the current food system?