Indonesia: Rp1.2 billion of contaminated Korean cabbage seeds culled


The Agriculture Ministry has destroyed roughly 1.5 tons of Chinese cabbage seeds from South Korea that were found to contain two types of soil-borne bacteria harmful to plants: Pseudomonas viridiflava and Pseudomonas cichorii. - The Jakarta Post/Asian News Network

JAKARTA, July 17 (The Jakarta Post/ANN): The Agriculture Ministry on Friday has destroyed roughly 1.5 tons of Chinese cabbage seeds from South Korea that were found to contain two types of soil-borne bacteria harmful to plants: Pseudomonas viridiflava and Pseudomonas cichorii.

Musyaffak Fauzi, the head of the Surabaya Agriculture Quarantine Office in East Java, said Pseudomonas viridiflava had yet to be found in Indonesia and the plants that carried it could not be cured through treatment. Therefore, he said, the seeds had to be exterminated.

"This is a serious threat to Indonesian agriculture, particularly horticultural crops," Musyaffak said after overseeing the destruction of Rp 1.2 billion (US$82,050) worth of cabbage seeds on Thursday (july 16).

The seeds were burned at PT. Koreana Seed Indonesia in Kediri, East Java.

The more than 500 Agriculture Quarantine Offices in Indonesia have been intensifying efforts to control imported seeds and produce following an increase in imports, the ministry said in a statement.

"The agricultural products have to be healthy, safe and suitable for consumption," Agriculture Quarantine Agency head Ali Jamil said separately

Meanwhile, it was also announced that Enoki mushrooms imported from South Korea are no longer in circulation at markets after a recall was issued by the Agriculture Ministry in May following reports that they contained harmful bacteria.

The ministry recalled the mushrooms exported by South Korean mushroom exporter Green Co. Ltd, an official from the ministry’s Food Security Agency (BKP), Agung Hendriadi, said.

"Officials from the regional branches of the Central Food Safety Competency Authority [OKKPP] have checked enoki mushrooms sold at markets in several regions such as Jambi, West Kalimantan, Ternate, and Jakarta and they found no enoki mushrooms from South Korea, specifically from Green Co," he said during a press conference recently.

Between April 21 and May 26, the agency had taken samples of enoki mushrooms imported from South Korea after the International Food Safety Authority Network (Infosan), a food security network under the United Nations and the World Health Organisation, notified them that people in the United States, Canada and Australia had contracted listeriosis after consuming enoki mushrooms imported from South Korea.- The Jakarta Post/Asian News Network

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