The Philippines' Food and Drug Administration said Thursday it was investigating the recall of specific batches of Lucky Me! Noodles in Europe and that it was checking the compliance of local manufacturer Monde Nissin Philippines with the country's law.
France, Ireland, and Malta have flagged Lucky Me! pancit canton and beef noodles for high levels of pesticide ethylene oxide. Irish authorities said prolonged consumption of ethylene oxide could cause health issues.
LUCKY ME, EXPLAINED:
"For public information, The FDA is currently investigating this matter and coordinating with the aforementioned food business operator to check its compliance. We shall provide updates on the result of investigation for public information," the FDA said.
The FDA said ethylene oxide is used to disinfect herbs and spices and the use of such for food sterilization is prohibited in the EU.
"However, there can still be traces from the ingredients or raw materials hence the EU set a maximum residue level at a very low level based on the type of commodity," it added.
Lucky Me! had said that its products comply with local and U.S. food safety standards, noting that ethylene oxide is not added in its noodles.
"We would like to clarify that Ethylene Oxide is not added in Lucky Me! products. It is a commonly used treatment in spices and seeds to control microbial growth typical in agricultural products. These materials, when processed into seasoning and sauces, may still show traces of ethylene oxide," Lucky Me! said in a statement.