Nitrite in sausages: the Ministry of Health analyzed 207 samples, all safe | Malaysia

Sausages, also known as “French hot dogs”, are seen at a sausage stand in Copenhagen on January 18, 2021. – Reuters pic

PUTRAJAYA, March 17 – All 207 samples of meat products, including sausages taken from the local market and those imported, for the analysis of nitrite content were found to comply with the prescribed levels, according to the Division of Food Safety and Quality (BKKM) of the Ministry of Health (MoH).

The ministry’s senior director of food safety and quality, Mohd Salim Dulatti, said the samples were taken for analysis after noting the Thailand Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) report on deli meats. tested to contain (excessively) nitrite above the permitted level.

According to him, the Thai FDA carried out tests after 14 children in the country suffered from methemoglobinemia, a blood disorder caused, after eating sausages.

In Malaysia, he stated that manufactured meat products such as sausages may contain nitrite at a level not exceeding 80 mg/kg, in accordance with international Codex standards.

“Based on the analysis carried out, all the sausage samples were found to comply with the defined level,” he said in a statement today, adding that BKKM was obtaining more information from the Thai Embassy. on the sausage products concerned.

Nitrite is a food preservative often used in meat products to inhibit bacterial growth (to extend shelf life) as well as to enhance food color.

Intake of nitrite at an excessive level (affects hemoglobin and reduces oxygen) can cause a rapid feeling of tiredness and fatigue, difficulty in breathing, dizziness and headache, palpitations and paleness.

Mohd Salim said the Ministry of Health will continue to monitor food safety in the local market and gateways to the country by complying with the Food Act 1983 and its regulations. — Bernama

Maria J. Book