CFS forces vinegar recall from City’super shelves

Authorities have ordered an Italian vinegar to be withdrawn from sale over an ingredient technicality – while admitting there is no health issue with the product.
Bottles of Cavedoni Blue Label 10Y Balsamic Vinegar of Modena have been pulled from the shelves of City’super after routine testing of a bottle bought at one of its stores, in Central.
The Centre for Food Safety (CFS) of the Food and Environmental Department said a sample of prepackaged vinegar, imported from Italy, was found with acetic acid below the legal standard for food composition.
The 250ml bottles of vinegar were produced by Antica Acetaia Cavedoni 1860 in Italy and bears a best-before date of December 31, 2025.
A spokesman for the CFS said the sample was collected for testing as part of its routine Food Surveillance Programme.
“The test result showed that the sample contained 3.3 grams of acetic acid in 100 cubic centimetres, below the legal standard of no less than four grams of acetic acid in 100 cubic centimetres of the vinegar.
“Although consuming vinegar with acetic acid below the legal standard would not pose any health concern, the sample did not meet the legal requirement on the composition of vinegar as stated in the Food and Drugs (Composition and Labelling) Regulations (Cap 132W).”
“Prosecution will be instituted should there be sufficient evidence,” the CFS said in a statement.
According to the regulation, if the composition of food available for sale in Hong Kong does not confirm with the legal requirements, the maximum penalty upon conviction is a fine of $50,000 and six months’ imprisonment.
The CFS has informed the vendor concerned of the irregularity and has instructed it to stop sale of the affected batch of the product. The vinegar recall has led to the bottles being pulled from shelves already.

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