THE Health Ministry and the Veterinary Department will step up inspections at a local poultry farm linked to salmonella-contaminated eggs that were discovered in Singapore.
Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the ministry, through the food safety and quality department, was monitoring all eggs sourced from Lay Hong Berhad Layer Farm in Jeram, Selangor.
“Until today, 364 chicken egg samples were analysed and only two were found to contain salmonella enteritidis,” he said in a Malaysiakini report.
Dr Noor Hisham said Malaysia took note that Singapore Food Agency had on March 12 directed four importers to recall eggs produced by Lay Hong, after they found to be contaminated with salmonella enteritidis.
“The recall is ongoing. The farm is also suspended and SFA will lift the suspension only when the farm has rectified the SE contamination issue,” SFA reportedly said on Friday.
To avoid possible infection and related complications, the Health Ministry advised consumers to thoroughly wash all eggs, not to use a cracked egg and to ensure the egg is fully cooked before consumption.
Meanwhile, Lay Hong assured that it will cooperate with the health authorities and will not be selling eggs from the Jeram 1 farm until investigations are complete.
“At the moment, all other farms in Jeram (Jeram 2-6) have been tested negative for salmonella, and these farms are divided into smaller satellite farms and separated from one another physically despite being located in Jeram,” its executive director Yap Chor How said in a statement.
“Each of these satellite farms has its functioning feeding and grading equipment to mitigate cross-contamination between farms. All of these mitigating factors have been in place for years to ensure our supply of eggs is not entirely disrupted if one of our farms is affected by contamination.
“This preparation has enabled us to continue to supply our eggs from other farms responsibly to our customers,” he added.