That salted egg fish snack with a dead lizard inside was made at Irvins’ former facility that closed in November, AVA confirms

A dead lizard was found in an Irvins Salted Egg Fish Skin packet, and the company took to Facebook last month to issue a sincerely-worded apology which calmed things down.
Facebook / Irvins Salted Egg / Jane Holloway

Remember the case where a black, charred, dead lizard was found in a packet of Irvins Salted Egg Fish Skin in December last year?

At the time, there was little information except for an apology issued by Irvins, who said that it did not have a full explanation but had reported the case to the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA).

Read also: A customer found a dead lizard in a packet of Irvins Salted Egg Fish Skin – and it may not be an isolated case

AVA released a statement on Monday (Feb 11) saying that the salted egg fish skin packet in question was produced at Irvins’ previous facility – which had ceased operations in November last year.

Irvins has since moved its operations from the Admiralty Street facility to one at JTC Food Hub @ Senoko.

AVA added that it has inspected Irvins’ current premises and asked the company to improve their quality control checks.

In its statement last month, Irvins promised “to make the necessary changes in our production to ensure this will never happen again”.

According to AVA, Irvins has made improvements in conducting regular refresher training for quality control operators, sourcing ingredients from reputable suppliers and conducting regular audits, as well as stepping up inspections on the production line.

Read also: Despite lizard fiasco, some people are saying they want to eat Irvins’ fish skins even more – and it just goes to show honesty is still the best policy

But of course, relevant checks still need to be done, and in its statement, AVA said that it will continue to do periodic audits and enforcement checks.

The authority also reminded food manufactures to “be responsible for complying with food safety standards/requirements and maintaining robust food safety management systems” and consumers to adhere to “good food safety practices”.

AVA also listed out a few guidelines for consumers:

  • Examine packaged food carefully. Do not buy if the packaging is damaged or open as it may contain harmful microorganisms that could cause food poisoning.
  • Keep foodstuffs (e.g. coffee, tea, powdered milk, biscuits) in clean, air-tight containers, away from heat and moisture.
  • Inspect food regularly for insect infestations, mouldiness, and other signs of spoilage. Discard when necessary.
  • Check food storage cupboards regularly to ensure that it is free from insect infestation or contamination.
  • Keep cupboards meant for food storage uncluttered and clean.