Too High MRL’s Stagnate Taiwanese Imports of American Blueberries


In 2019, Taiwan rejected or destroyed 53 shipments of US horticultural products that did not meet the food safety standards of the Taiwanese Food and Drug Administration (TFDA). The TFDA makes violations public on its website when it gives notice to an importer.

High Maximum Residue Limits (MRLs) were the cited reason for the 34 of the 53 registered rejections.

The main culprit was fluopyram with a total of 11 detections on different products: blueberries (5 incidents), broccoli (3 incidents), onion (1 incidents), lettuce (1 incidents) and fruit powder (1 incidents). In addition, cyfluthrine was found on grapes on three occasions. In addition to MRL’s, violations of food additives were found in 11 registered cases.

Blueberries were the product with the most offenses during 2019 with seven rejections.

The American blueberries are marketed in many of the largest international retail chains in Taiwan, but imports have stagnated since the successive violations started in July 2019.

The TFDA has published the comprehensive inspection list for food imports received from the United States for 2020. Both blueberries and (cooled) onions are on this list. All incoming blueberry and onion shipments will be subject to a 20-50% higher inspection percentage in 2020. Lettuce and broccoli have been removed from this inspection list.

Cadmium is the only discovery of heavy metals, with seven registered violations. The cadmium violations were found in the following categories: onions (four incidents), live crab (one), lettuce (one) and celery (one).

By Fresh Plaza