After the voluntary recall of two batches of instant noodle products for possible traces of salmonella by Nestle Philippines, the Food and Drug Administration of that country made plans to inspect and test other noodle products in the market.
FDA director Suzette Lazo said they would monitor other brands of noodles and make sure they were safe. "We consider what happened on Thursday (the recall) as a signal to put our monitoring system in place," Lazo said.
When asked if the FDA would send teams to factories of other makers of noodles, she said her agency would do "much more than that."
"We will follow a procedure but I cannot give details because it is part of our operation," she said. She added that the FDA was authorised to test processed food products. According to Lazo, fresh foods such as fruits, vegetables and fish are the responsibility of the Department of Agriculture.
On Thursday, Nestle Philippines voluntarily recalled at least two batches of Maggi Rich Mami Noodles beef and chicken flavours. It said its quality testing found possible traces of salmonella in them. Covered by the recall are batches with lot codes 11020598A2 and 11030598A1.
Lazo said there is no timetable for the tests of sample noodles. She advised consumers who bought the product with those lot codes to return them to Nestle Philippines Inc.
Food poisoning involving salmonella may cause complications in weakened elderly patients, pregnant women, infants and children, and cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy, Lazo said.
Meanwhile, Lazo advised consumers to boil noodles to kill the salmonella bacteria, even if some makers advise cooking the product at 70 degrees Celsius.