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Dutch retailers withdraw eggs over fipronil concerns
Many supermarket chains have removed Dutch eggs from their shelves.
Insecticide banned for use on animals intended for consumption

Dutch retailers are withdrawing eggs from their shelves over fears they could be contaminated with fipronil.

Traces of the insecticide were reportedly found in Belgium and the Netherlands last month, which has led to some poultry farms shutting down and to supermarkets halting the sale of eggs.

According to news agency Reuters, German authorities are working to examine all egg supplies and to determine where they originated. But German agriculture minister Christian Schmidt said the likelihood of a health hazard was very unlikely.

"The situation is under control, but we cannot give the all-clear signal yet ... We are taking this very seriously," Schmidt told the Straubinger Tagblatt/Landshuter Zeitung newspaper group.

Last week the Dutch Food and Safety Authority (NVWA) issued a warning to consumers urging them to avoid a specific type of egg recognisable by specific serial numbers. However, some 180 cattle farms, rearing companies and hatcheries have been temporarily shut down.

Many supermarket chains including Penny and Germany’s REWE have removed Dutch eggs from their shelves. On Friday, Aldi stores confirmed that is has halted all egg sales, regardless of origin. Albert Heijn - the country’s largest supermarket - also said that it has removed two-thirds of the eggs it normally sells.

Often used in veterinary products against mites, fleas and ticks, fipronil is banned for use on animals intended for consumption. For the World Health Organisation (WHO) fipronil is “moderately toxic” to humans and, in large quantities, it can damage the kidney, liver or thyroid gland. 

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Gucci pledges to go fur-free

News Story 1
 Italian fashion house Gucci has announced that it will no longer use animal fur in its designs. Gucci’s president & CEO Marco Bizzarri made the announcement on Wednesday (October 11) at The London College of Fashion.

The move follows a long-standing relationship with The Humane Society of the United States and LAV - members of the international Fur Free alliance. Gucci’s fur-free policy includes mink, coyote, raccoon dog, fox, rabbit, karakul and all other species bred or caught for fur.  

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Avian flu text alert service launched in Northern Ireland

A new text system to alert bird keepers to the threat of avian flu has been launched in Northern Ireland. The service will enable bird keepers to take action to protect their flock at the earliest opportunity.

Keepers who have already provided NI's Department of Agriculture with a valid mobile number have automatically been subscribed to the service and notified by text. Bird keepers who have not yet received a text should text ‘BIRDS’ to 67300 to register.