Dutch food safety authority NVWA is facing fierce criticism in the Tweede Kamer on Thursday. The parliamentarians have nothing good to say about the NVWA's actions in dealing with millions of Dutch eggs being contaminated by toxic insecticide fipronil. In summary, the MPs accused the NVWA of not communicating well, not responding adequately to an anonymous tip about the contamination and having an inadequate setup to deal with such a crisis, NU.nl reports.
Thirteen supermarket chains affiliated with Superunie quietly recalled waffles and cookies from their shelves on Wednesday because they contain toxic insecticide fipronil, AD reported on Thursday. "We expect more such silent recalls", Wilco Jansen of Emté said to the newspaper. "There are many products with a lot of egg in them. No idea where this is going to end."
The Tweede Kamer is cutting its summer holiday short in order to debate the fipronil contamination of eggs from Dutch poultry farms with Public Health Minister Edith Schippers and State Secretary Martijn van Dam of Economic Affairs, NU.nl reports.
State Secretary Martijn van Dam of Economic Affairs is stepping down on September 1st to go to his new job at NPO, whether or not there's a new cabinet. His decision to go through with his planned departure despite the raging fipronil contaminated egg crisis, for which he partially carries responsibility, is leading to criticism from other politicians. Though the poultry sector itself is not sad to see him go, AD reports.
Dutch food and consumer product safety authority NVWA denies that it first learned that eggs were maybe contaminated by toxic fipronil in November last year. The authority did receive a report about fipronil in that month, but that report only stated that it had been used to clean stables - there was no reason to believe that it could end up in eggs and pose a potential health risk, inspector general Rob van Lint said on Wednesday, RTL Nieuws reports.
Last week supermarkets recalled "between 8 and 10 million eggs" because they may contain toxic insecticide fipronil, Rene Roorda, director of the bureau for foodstuffs trading CBL, said to the Telegraaf.
After seven weeks in quarantine, giant pandas Wu Wen and Xing Ya will make their first public appearance at the Ouwehands Zoo in Rhenen this afternoon. "We have been waiting for this moment for a long time", zoo director Robin de Lange said to RTV Utrecht. "You can imagine that if you wait for something so long, then your are very happy that it's finally happening today."
The average Netherlands resident tossed about 41 kilograms of food into trash bins last year, which translates to a 15% decrease in food waste from 2010. That year people still threw away 48 kilos of food, according to research commissioned by the Economic Affairs and Infrastructure & Environment ministries in the Netherlands.
Economic Affairs State Secretary Martijn van Dam and slaughterhouses in the Netherlands came to an agreement on voluntary camera supervision to monitor against animal abuse. The cameras will make sure that there is a good view on all actions involving living animals. "You must be able to see every step in the process", Van Dam said to broadcaster NOS.
Poultry farmers in the Netherlands no longer have to keep their animals caged. The bird flu risk in the Netherlands is officially gone and State Secretary Martijn van Dam of Economic Affairs decided to lift this and other measures, which have been in place for five months, RTL Nieuws reports.
Departing State Secretary Martijn van Dam of Economic Affairs wants to install cameras in Dutch slaughterhouses and give the footage to Dutch food safety authority NVWA to monitor abuse. This is in reaction to leaked footage showing horrible abuses in a Belgian slaughterhouse, AD reports.
The video from Tielt, Belgium shows pigs being kicked and beaten, being cut open while fully conscious and being drowned. The slaughterhouse, which also supplied some Dutch butchers, was closed indefinitely.
In an effort to reduce the number of serious dog bites a year, the Netherlands may soon compile a list of "high risk" dogs for which stricter rules will apply, according to advise the council for animal affairs RDA sent to the government, RTL Nieuws reports.
The list of high risk dogs is still being prepared. For the list experts assess dog breeds on how likely they are to bite and what the impact of a bite can be. The owners of dogs on the list will be subject to stricter rules and measures.
Bird flu was diagnosed in sick birds on a poultry farm in Zoeterwoude, Zuid-Holland. A total of 28,500 birds on the farm were culled, as well as some 30 thousand birds on a nearby farm, RTL Nieuws reports.
The two farms are located about a kilometer fro each other. Another poultry farm is about 3 kilometers from the infected farm. Its animals are being examined for bird flu.
The Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs implemented extra measures to prevent bird flu spreading from wild birds to the poultry sector in the Netherlands. Agricultural and horticultural organization LTO supports the extra measures, but worry that they will be in place for months.
All poultry farmers in the Netherlands were ordered on Wednesday to cage and guard all their birds intended for the production of meat and eggs. This precautionary measure was implemented by State Secretary Martijn van Dam of Economic Affairs after highly pathogenic bird flu H5N8 was found in wild birds in Germany, Austria, Hungary, Poland and Switzerland, NOS reports.
About 10 dead grebes and tufted ducs were also found in the Netherands, near Monnickendam. They died of bird flu, though further study will reveal whether it was subtype H5N8.
The four Technical Universities in the Netherlands needs more money to cope with the influx of students, student organizations at the four universities and intercity student association ISO wrote in an open letter to the responsible ministers, NOS reports.
The letter is addressed to Ministers Jet Bussemaker of Education and Henk Kamp of Economic Affairs, as well as State Secretary Martijn van Dam of Economic Affairs. The Netherlands' four Technical Universities are located in Eindhoven, Delft, Wageningen and Enschede.
State Secretary Martijn van Dam was involved in a traffic accident in Seoul, South Korea. His car was hit by a van. The State Secretary escaped with only a shock, but the car sustained considerable damage
State Secretary Martijn van Dam of Economic Affairs is not on the PvdA's candidate list for parliamentarians in the upcoming elections, scheduled for March next year. But he would like to be part of a future cabinet, he said to Dutch newspaper AD.
Dutch people still throw away an average of 135 kilograms of food per person a year. That brings the total food waste for the Netherlands to a total of about 2 billion kilograms per year, which means that the government's goal of reducing food waste by 20 percent was not reached
Hundreds of people and several organizations are appealing to the Council of State against proposed exploratory drilling for natural gas on the North Sea island of Schiermonnikoog
The Dutch government is further restricting hunters from importing their trophies to the Netherlands. The list of banned trophies was extended to also include the species white rhino, elephant, hippo, cheetah, polar bear and lion
State Secretary Martijn van Dam of Economic Affairs came up with stricter rules for the ritual slaughter of animals, but stopped short of actually banning it. He announced the new rules, made after agreements with Jewish and Islamic organizations, in a letter to the lower house of parliament on Wednesday
The Netherlands is working on developing a smartphone app that will allow consumers to scan supermarket products, see what ingredients are in them and what route those ingredients followed to end up in the supermarket. State Secretary Martijn van Dam of Economic Affairs wants to start making arrangements with supermarkets and food companies this month.
The Netherlands is an important link in the illegal trafficking of endangered wildlife, both in terms of market and of transit, according to research done by criminologist Daan van Uhm for which he will receive his doctorate on Tuesday