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每日英語跟讀 Ep.K206: 蛋黃酥熱賣環保署加強查核致癌「蘇丹紅」 EPA steps up checks for carcinogenic industrial dye in Mid-Autumn mooncakes

· 每日跟讀單元 Daily English

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每日英語跟讀 Ep.K206: EPA steps up checks for carcinogenic industrial dye in Mid-Autumn mooncakes

With the Mid-Autumn Festival nearly upon us, bakery shelves are heaving with a vast array of appetizing mooncakes in a mind-boggling variety of shapes, sizes and flavors. For many Taiwanese gourmands, the venerable egg yolk pastry is a special favorite. However, in the past some unscrupulous businesses were discovered to have added the harmful industrial dye Sudan Red G to their egg yolk pastries to give the salty egg yolks a rosy-red luster. Sudan Red G was classified as a toxic chemical by the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) in July 2018. The administration says it has been carrying out inspections since the ban but has not discovered any illegal use of Sudan Red G. However, with increased demand for egg yolk pastries during the festive season, the administration says it will intensify inspection work during the period.

中秋佳節即將到來,市面上開始出現各式各樣可口的月餅,尤其蛋黃酥最受歡迎。然而過去曾發生有不肖業者為了使鹹蛋黃色澤紅潤,而添加對人體有害的工業用染料「蘇丹紅」。環保署表示,蘇丹紅色素已於二○一八年六月公告為「毒性化學物質」,近年來稽查沒有再發現業者違法使用蘇丹紅,不過考量中秋節將近,鹹蛋黃需求增加,環保署將加強稽查。

In the past, some egg farms would add the carcinogenic substance to duck feed in order to give their salted duck eggs a deep color and luster. In 2017, the illegal use of Sudan Red G was detected in an online retailer’s salted egg yolk mooncakes. The poultry farm which supplied the egg yolks was required to cull its duck population and destroy its stock of duck eggs. Fraud charges were also brought against the farm. The following year, the EPA classified Sudan Red G as a category 4 toxic chemical.

過去有業者為了讓鹹鴨蛋看起來色澤飽滿,在鴨隻飼料中添加有致癌風險的蘇丹紅,二○一七年曾發生網購名店月餅原料鹹蛋黃被驗出違法添加蘇丹紅,供貨畜牧場鴨隻撲殺、鴨蛋銷毀,業者被依詐欺取財罪嫌起訴,環保署則在隔年將蘇丹紅色素列為第四類毒性化學物質。

Sudan Red G is in fact an umbrella term for a series of related chemical dyes that sound similar but have different molecular structures, chiefly Sudan Red I, II, III and IV, and Sudan Red 7B and G. Because the molecular structure of the Sudan Red G dye is easily soluble in oils, it is often used in industrial settings such as colorant in furniture paint, shoe polish, floor wax, car wax and oils to give products a rich color and luster.

蘇丹紅其實是幾種相似但不同的分子之統稱,這幾種化學物質常作為染料,主要包括:蘇丹紅I、蘇丹紅II、蘇丹紅III、蘇丹紅IV、蘇丹紅7B、蘇丹紅G,由於蘇丹紅色素的分子結構易溶於油脂,在工業上常用於家具漆、鞋油、地板蠟、汽車蠟和油脂著色,使色澤飽滿鮮豔。

Sudan Red G’s unique properties — inexpensive, easy-to-obtain, stable, and color-fade resistant — mean that it often crops up in food safety incidents. In addition to salted egg yolks, outside of Taiwan Sudan Red G has been found to have been added to chilli sauce and chilli powder; however, the group of dyes with which Sudan Red G shares a common molecular structure are listed as category 3 carcinogens by the International Agency for Research on Cancer.

由於蘇丹紅便宜易取得、穩定又不易褪色的特性,因此常在食安事件中佔有「一席之地」,除了鹹蛋黃,國外也曾在辣椒醬、辣椒粉中發現添加蘇丹紅;不過這類色素的分子都被國際癌症研究機構列為第三類致癌物。

EPA Toxic and Chemical Substances Bureau Director-General Hsieh Yein-rui advises consumers not to choose food products that appear overly vivid and bright, or that look unnatural. Hsieh adds that the nutritional value of egg yolks is the same whether they are yellow or red in color, and warns that customers who select egg-containing products on the basis of their bright luster may well be consuming adulterated egg yolks.

環保署毒物及化學物質局長謝燕儒呼籲,消費者不要挑選顏色過於鮮豔、看起來不自然的食品,且蛋黃不論是黃色或紅色營養價值都一樣,過度在意色澤,反而可能吃進「加料」的蛋黃。Source article: https://www.taipeitimes.com/News/lang/archives/2021/09/19/2003764584

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