Cracking down: authorities trace ungraded eggs that showed up in six Scarborough food shops
Over the weekend, the Star reported that at least six Scarborough food stores, along with a few in York Region, have been charged with buying and using illegal, ungraded eggs. One distributor of the ungraded eggs is identified as a Chinese supplier who delivers the illegal orbs from an unmarked white cube van.
An unlicensed warehouse in Scarborough was raided by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) and was found to have more than 100,000 ungraded eggs, many which were covered in fecal matter, dirt, feathers and cracks. The eggs have been destroyed, and most of the offending establishments have also cleared out their stock.
As the Star’s Robert Cribb points out, ungraded eggs are no small matter:
B.C. health officials have traced an outbreak of about 650 salmonella cases over the past three years — a 300 per cent increase since 2007 — to egg consumption including ungraded eggs. Fourteen per cent of those victims have required hospitalization, said Dr. Eleni Galanis, physician epidemiologist with the B.C. Centre for Disease Control. Taking into account under-reporting, the outbreak has likely affected 16,000 people in the province, she said.
Charges are still pending, and the matter is being further investigated by Toronto Public Health, York Region, the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, and Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.