STARFRUIT juice from Taiwanese brand Sunlight has been suspended by the Agri-food & Veterinary Authority (AVA).
Sunlight was one of 13 food and drink brands from Taiwan to be tested following media reports that products from the island had been tainted by plasticisers, substances found in plastics which should not be added to food. The product failed the sampling test, and its importer has been ordered to remove it from the market immediately, the AVA said yesterday. The drink could still be safe in limited amounts. Based on the level of plasticisers detected in the sample, a 60kg adult could drink up to about 420ml every day over a lifetime without significant health risks. Nevertheless, the AVA advised those who have bought any items of the Sunlight brand to discard them. It also plans to test jam and jelly manufactured in Taiwan.
Meanwhile, bubble tea brand Gong Cha has voluntarily stopped selling its fruit-flavoured drinks because the flavoured syrup comes from a Taiwanese supplier. The firm said the supplier is not one of those affected, but it is erring on the side of caution. “At the moment, they are sending all samples for testing in Taiwan. We should have the results by the end of the week,” said operations director Goh Chee Cheng.
Another popular bubble tea chain, Koi, has discontinued its peach and passion fruit drinks and allowed the AVA to do tests on them. Bubble tea fan Anusha Gunasegaram said the news of the contamination will not put her off the drink for good. But the 24-year-old auditor said: “I think I won’t be buying them till AVA gives the green light.” The public can refer to www.ava.gov.sg for an updated list of brands that have been tested.