> News in English > News

No toxins found in 'blue' mozzarella

Probes opened in Italy and EU on German-made cheese

21 June, 18:02
No toxins found in 'blue' mozzarella

(ANSA) - Trento, June 21 - Clinical tests on 'blue' mozzarella imported from Germany which shocked Italian consumers have not revealed any toxic substances or harmful bacteria, the prosecutor's office here said on Monday.

The 'blue' mozzarella was first discovered last week by a housewife in Turin who bought the German-made product at a supermarket.

Within minutes after being opened the cheese turned an unsightly color blue.

The discovery led to an order from health officials to seize some 70,000 similar packages of the German version of the famed Italian cheese, made by Milchwerk Jaeger GmbH and distributed by two discount chains.

A probe was opened here in Trento after another batch of 'blue' mozzarella was discovered over the weekend.

On Monday the European Union, working in conjunction with Italian and Germany authorities, also opened an investigation.

"The situation is under control. We are following developments very closely and will soon decide on whether to send a health inspector to Germany to verify the origin of the contamination and under stand how this happened," a spokesman for the European Commission, the EU executive, said.

'Blue' mozzarella has also been found in Slovenia, the spokesman added.

According to the tests carried out here in northeast Italy, the phenomenon appears to be caused by pseudomonas, a natural, non-toxic bacteria which was found in the water used to preserve the cheese.

Separate tests in Bologna and Padua have produced similar results. "We can exclude the presence of any toxins, even if we cannot say for sure whether the cheese is edible. But then this is not a problem because no one would eat a blue-tinted mozzarella," Trento chief Prosecutor said.

"This latest food incident, underscores the importance of food security and the growing and constant need for a political and institutional commitment to protecting Italy's food heritage," Copari, a federation of Italian food producers, said on Monday.

"Once again a falsified, foreign product has arrived on Italian tables presenting a potentially serious health risk which will certainly hurt the national economy," Copagri added.

Hermann Jaeger, the owner of Milchwerk Jaeger GmbH, admitted to the German press agency DPA on Monday that there had been a 'blue' mozzarella problem but that it had been resolved "three weeks ago".

Jaeger confirmed that it had been caused by the pseudomonas bacteria and said that the water used for packaging may have been contaminated by a factory near one of his plants. He also said that the proper authorities had been informed of this.

According to microbiologist Michele La Placa, pseudomonas bacteria is a problem for hospitals because it can multiply in the stagnant water where flowers brought to patients sit.

It poses the greatest threat to the elderly who had respiratory problems or weak immune systems, La Placa added.

The bacteria was first identified in 1870 during the Franco-Prussian War when injured soldiers began turning blue after their wounds were washed with stagnant water.

Top News

    • 13:09
    • 09 apr
    • ROMA

    Fecondazione eterologa, cade il divieto

    La Corte Costituzionale lo hanno dichiarato illegittimo
    • 12:09
    • 09 apr
    • MILANO

    Intesa paga 294 mln 'tassa Bankitalia'

    Segue Unicredit (196), ma su parametri patrimoniali impatto soft
    • 11:40
    • 09 apr

    Papa: tacciano le armi in Siria

    Dolore per assassinio gesuita Van der Lugt e per vittime guerra
    • 10:43
    • 09 apr
    • MILANO

    Garlasco: mamma Rita, ho ancora fiducia

    E' cominciato il processo d'appello bis, Stasi è in aula
    • 09:03
    • 09 apr
    • MILANO

    Borsa: Milano apre in rialzo, +0,24%

    Identico aumento per l'indice Ftse All share
    • 09:00
    • 09 apr
    • ROMA

    Immigrazione: Alfano,un morto su barcone

    Continuano sbarchi, 4.000 migranti soccorsi in ultime 48 ore
    • 07:01
    • 09 apr
    • ROMA

    Mafia, colpo a cosche in E-R

    Operazione cc regione e Crotone,13 ordinanze,sequestro da 13 mln
    • 06:36
    • 09 apr

    Pakistan:bomba a mercato,almeno 15 morti

    Ordigno ad alto potenziale in zona controllata forze sicurezza
    • 01:05
    • 09 apr
    • ROMA

    Immigrazione: Alfano, è allarme sbarchi

    Non bastano 80 mln Ue per Frontex. Def grazie a nostra azione
    • 00:23
    • 09 apr
    • NEW YORK

    Australia e Svezia, paradisi per giovani

    Secondo studio Usa. Italia fuori da classifica prime 30 nazioni