Opening a can of worms: 2 brands of canned sardines pulled from shelves after dead worms found

Importers were instructed to recall two brands of canned sardines after news of contamination broke out on social media.
Kementerian Kesihatan Malaysia

Malaysia’s Health Ministry recalled two brands of canned sardines originating from China after reports were made about the products being contaminated with dead worms, reported The Star Online.

In a statement made on Thursday (Apr 19), the ministry said checks had been conducted on the brands following the circulation of social media posts about the canned sardines containing nematodes, a type of worm.

The TL Tan Lung and TLC branded canned sardines were analysed by the ministry’s Food Safety and Quality division, said Health Ministry director-general Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah.

It was revealed that both brands did not comply with the Food Act 1983.

“As such, enforcement has been taken by the Ministry and the importer involved has been instructed to recall the products,” said Dr Noor Abdullah.

“The Ministry will continue to monitor canned sardine and mackerels that are imported at all entry points and supermarkets worldwide.”

Earlier in April, the Indonesian Food and Drug Monitoring Agency (BPOM) had reportedly instructed three importers to recall tins of imported mackerel after they were similarly found to be contaminated with dead worms, according to New Straits Times.

Dr Noor Hisham added that consumers can contact their respective state or district health departments, the Health Ministry or the Food Safety and Quality division if there are complaints on food hygiene and safety.