Expatica news

Supermarket warns not to eat ‘toxic’ pistachios

24 January 2006

BRUSSELS – The Belgian supermarket chain Colruyt has warned customers not to eat a particular brand of pistachio nuts which could be toxic.

On Tuesday, the supermarket admitted that samples of peeled, 200g packets of pistachios labelled ‘Estudiantes’, had been found to contain too much aflatoxin B1.

The substance is a naturally occurring mycotoxin which is believed to cause cancer in animals and humans.

It sometimes forms in humid conditions in crops, quite frequently in nuts.

In small quantities it is generally thought to be harmless and there are strict limits for the amount allowed in products.

On its website (www.colruyt.be), Colruyt advised customers to return the pistachios to the supermarket for a full refund.

It said anyone who had eaten the pistachio nuts had no reason to worry. “You will not be at risk,” said the advice. “Aflatoxin B1 only causes problems to health if you have consumed large quantities of the pistachios concerned repeatedly.

“In that case, aflatoxin increases the risk of liver cancer. It’s particularly people with hepatitis who are sensitive to aflatoxin.”

The affected pistachio nuts are marked with bar code 25289183, expiry date 06-2006 and lot 6/05043/3.

Anyone with worries or questions should call the Colruyt advice line on 02.363.54.54.

[Copyright Expatica News 2006]

Subject: Belgian news