Department ramps up testing of animal feeds for banned substances

Department ramps up testing of animal feeds for banned substances

27/10/2020 01:45:00

Department ramps up testing of animal feeds for banned substances

Department of Agriculture testing for banned substances in animal feed will be ramped up over the coming weeks after a growth hormone was identified in an equine feed manufactured by Glanbia.

A specific importation of molasses for the Glanbia product was found to have contained very low or trace levels of banned substance Zilpaterol.Zilpaterol is approved for use as a feed supplement to enhance performance in some beef production systems outside the EU.

Responding to questioning from Sinn Féin’s Matt Carty, Agriculture Minister Charlie McConalogue said feedstuffs containing molasses from the affected batch were also sampled and sent for official analysis.“Test results for these precautionary feed samples indicated that Zilpaterol levels were below the accredited range of the method of analysis.

“Based on these laboratory results of the levels of Zilpaterol and indicative risk assessments by relevant experts, there is no feed safety issue as a result of this contamination,” he said.Minister McConalogue added under the Department’s National Residue Control Plan, more than 900 samples are tested for Zilpaterol from bovine, ovine, porcine, poultry and equine species annually.

“In the past decade, no positives have been identified or reported.“To ensure the continued integrity of the food chain targeted NRCP testing will be increased over the coming period to provide additional assurances with regards overall public health and food safety,” he said.

All Gain ruminant feed products that were temporarily placed on precautionary hold have since been released for sale.In a statement, Glanbia said no detectable presence of zilpaterol was found in the ruminant feed range.It also said Gain had switched molasses supplier after the confirmation of an equine feed issue and resumed the production of equine feed following consultation with the Department of Agriculture.

“We can confirm that our new molasses source was tested and proven to be free from the presence of zilpaterol.” Read more: »

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