The Taipei Department of Health has discovered that two types of instant noodles from Southeast Asian brands contain a cancer-causing substance. During the city’s 2023 inspection of instant noodles, the department found that “Ah Lai White Curry Noodles” from Malaysia and “Indomie: Special Chicken Flavour” noodles from Indonesia contained ethylene oxide, a chemical compound linked to lymphoma and leukemia.
The testing revealed that ethylene oxide was present in both the noodles and flavor packet of the Malaysian product, and only in the flavor packet of the Indonesian product. The department has ordered the retailer to remove the products from its shelves, and the importers will face fines ranging from NT$60,000 (US$1957.87) to NT$200 million.
Ah Lai White Curry Noodles Spotted
Ethylene oxide is poisonous when consumed or inhaled, and can cause skin and eye irritation, birth defects, and hereditary defects. The inspection of instant noodles was carried out by randomly selecting 30 products from various locations in Taipei, including supermarkets, convenience stores, traditional wet markets, and Southeast Asian food shops.
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