What are dioxins?
|image source: Wikipedia|
They are in a class of environmental pollutants, that are commonly referred to as "the Dirty Dozen". The World Health Organization has a very thorough factsheet about dioxins.
To sum it up:
While dioxins can contaminate our environment through natural means like fires and volcanos, most of our dioxin-pollution is from industrial waste that is not properly treated.
90% of our exposure to dioxins is from our food supply. It builds up in fatty tissues of animals, and when we consume those fatty tissues, we are exposed to dioxins (and other persistant pollutants as well). So most of our exposure comes from eating fatty animal-based foods.
The WHO says that all people have "background exposure" to dioxins. They are concerned that we need to find ways to reduce our background exposure, because it is highly toxic.
So when Misrad Habriut announced that they found dioxin in eggs, it means that they found dioxin in a too-high concentration in the eggs, as most eggs contain some amount of dioxins (sadly, in my opinion).
According to Misrad Habriut, dioxins cause the most damage when there is long term exposure to higher than "acceptable" levels.
According to Mako (channel 2 news), who broke the story, Misrad Habriut is saying that (even though they won't release the names of the farms) the four egg farms that were found to have high dioxin levels are ALL very small and are scattered throughout the country, and they stopped distribution from those farms immediately upon learning the results of the lab tests (and destroyed any remaining inventory).
They maintain it is unlikely any one person had a consistent exposure to these particular eggs, daily, over the long term.
So as far as the nitty-gritty of what we all need to know: Misrad Habriut says you can buy new eggs, as they have removed the tainted ones from the market.
As far as the ones in your fridge. My personal feeling is that it is a gamble. Let's say 3% of the eggs on the market were problematic. Are the eggs in your fridge (or mine) likely to be part of that 3%? No. But how would you know? I am going to have to leave that up to each person to make their own decision.
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