Written answers

Thursday, 8 December 2005

Department of Agriculture and Food

Food Safety Standards

8:00 pm

Photo of Trevor SargentTrevor Sargent (Dublin North, Green Party)
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Question 172: To ask the Minister for Agriculture and Food her views on the recent decision of the European Food Safety Authority to allow the use of formaldehyde as a growth enhancer in chicken feed; and the steps she will take to ensure producers and consumers are informed on the matter. [38511/05]

Photo of Mary CoughlanMary Coughlan (Minister, Department of Social, Community and Family Affairs; Minister, Department of Agriculture and Food; Donegal South West, Fianna Fail)
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Feed additives are regulated at EU level under Regulation (EC) 1831/2004. Formaldehyde is currently authorised for use as a preservative in skim milk for use in pig nutrition. Following an application for authorisation, the European Food Safety Authority published an opinion in September 2004 concerning the use of formaldehyde in feed for fattening chickens. Despite this opinion, which was mostly favourable, the Commission expressed concerns about the use of the additive and referred the matter for further scientific evaluation. This new evaluation is ongoing, and in the meantime, formaldehyde is not currently authorised for use in chicken feed.

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