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Indian Spice Brands MDH and Everest are the global safety faces of the brand according to the people

  • Posted on May 15, 2024
  • News

Major Indian spice brands MDH and Everest face global bans and scrutiny over suspected contamination with cancer-causing ethylene oxide, threatening India's $4 billion spice export industry.


The leading Indian spice brands, MDH and Everest, are now in the spotlight and they are facing sales restrictions and an increase in scrutiny in several countries over the problems related to the possible contamination with ethylene oxide, which is a cancer-causing pesticide.

The other week, Singapore and Hong Kong stopped the sales of some spice products from the two famous brands after finding out that the suspected levels of ethylene oxide were high. Besides the U. S. Food and Drug Administration, the MDH and Everest products which may contain the pesticide are also under investigation.

Besides the two car manufacturing giants, the European Union has discovered the same carcinogenic substance in the samples of chili peppers and peppercorns from India. The Maldives, Bangladesh, and Australian regulators have also initiated their probes into the Indian spice imports as well.

India is the spice leader of the world, it exports over $4 billion worth every year, to 180 countries, thus making it the biggest spice consumer and producer. MDH is a 105-year-old family business that sells more than 60 blended spices, while Everest is the biggest spice maker in India and it is exporting to over 80 nations.

The Indian government has instructed the states to carry out the quality tests and they have also issued a guideline to the exporters on how to monitor the ethylene oxide. Nevertheless, the FDA had previously inspected Indian spice facilities and found out that they did not have sanitary and cleanliness standards.

Food safety experts are saying that the repeated cases of pesticide residues that have been found are a threat to the long-term reputation and capacity of India to export spices globally if stricter quality controls are not introduced in the whole supply chain.

Also Read: Environmentalist awarded with the 'Green Nobel' for saving Indian forests

The looming cancellation of key markets such as China could be the reason that over half of the annual spice exports of India will be lost, as the Global Trade Research Initiative think tank predicts. The matter is being closely monitored by spice lovers all over the world who might not know the complex roots of the spices they eat.

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