Vietnam orders Philippine beverage firm URC to recall more products

Thanh Nien News

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URC Vietnam has been ordered to recall five batches of products since May 20, 2016. File photo URC Vietnam has been ordered to recall five batches of products since May 20, 2016. File photo


The Ministry of Health on Tuesday ordered a recall of more beverage products made by URC Vietnam, a unit of Philippine producer Universal Robina, amid an expanding food safety scandal that has affected three other batches. 
The company will have to pull all products from a batch of green tea C2 manufactured on January 11 and a batch of energy drink Rong Do on January 14, after tests found that they have higher lead content than permitted limits, said Nguyen Van Nhien, chief inspector from the ministry.
It is not immediately clear how many bottles are affected this time. 
Nhien also announced latest test results showing that the products from these two batches have lead content from 0.21 to 0.46 mg/l, or between four and nine times above the limit of 0.05 mg/l.
On Friday, the ministry ordered URC Vietnam to recall three other batches.
During a meeting with the Philippine company on Tuesday, health officials also demanded URC managers take the order seriously and thoroughly report on the recall process.
There have been conflicting test results in the prolonged case.
The National Institute for Food Control (NIFC), another agency managed by the ministry, has recently rejected accusations that it took bribes and compromised tests on the two beverage products in question.
Earlier some posts on social media cited an "insider" accusing two officers from the institute of receiving VND1 billion (US$44,730) from URC Vietnam to modify test results for C2 and Rong Do. The products were cleared even after they had been found to have higher lead content than the permitted limit of 0.05 mg/l, according to the posts.
NIFC later confirmed that the products met safety standards.

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