S. Korea gov’t seeks lifting of ban on noodlesBy Jerry E. Esplanada
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines—Declaring it was safe for human consumption, the South Korean government is urging the Philippine government to immediately lift the ban on the importation of South Korean instant noodle preparations carrying the brand name Nongshim.
In a statement, the South Korean Embassy said the ban was “seriously impacting both Philippine and Korean traders, as well as the image of Korea-made noodles.”
“Given this serious situation, we are requesting for appropriate measures from the Philippine government, including the expeditious lifting of the ban on the six Korean noodle brands,” the embassy said.
It was referring to the following noodle brands: Nongshim Neoguri (Hot), Nongshim Neoguri (Hot Multi), Nongshim Neoguiri (Mild), Nongshim Big Bowl Shrimp, Nongshim Saengsaeng Udon, and Nongshim Saengsaeng Udon Bowl.
According to the embassy, the Korea Food and Drug Administration had “requested Nongshim Co. Ltd. to recall the six noodle brands immediately after it learned of the news that benzopyrene was detected recently” in samples of the product.
“But the KFDA conducted tests and issued a certificate, dated Nov. 7, 2012, saying the level of benzopyrene found in the Nongshim noodle powder—which ranged from 0.4 to 1.6 ppb—was extremely low and has no harmful effects on the human body,” it said.
“Furthermore, several foreign countries, except the Philippines and Thailand, have lifted their respective bans on the six Nongshim noodle brands. Taipei authorities have also conducted its own tests, concluding that the noodles are indeed not harmful to consumers,” said the embassy.