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Food Safety Drive Gears Up in Guangdong

The recent liquor poisoning case in south China's Guangdong Province, which left 11 dead, has led to the launch of a seven-month food safety campaign to collect fake and inferior products.


Nine categories of staple and commonly used foods--dairy products, liquor, beverages, cooking oils, meat, vegetables, fruit, soybean products, and aquatic products--are to be closely inspected.


Officials from the provincial industry and commerce, health, quality inspection and quarantine authorities have teamed up to put an end to harm done by questionable products in these areas.


"Each sector--including production, manufacturing, wholesale and retail--will be put under close scrutiny before the product flows to consumers," said Lu Chengxian, director of the Guangdong Provincial Administration for Industry and Commerce.


Use of toxic additives, rotten meat, dairy products with low protein content and overuse of edible additives are the most common problems associated with these questionable goods.


The campaign will have an obvious impact by the end of 2004, according to Lu.


Fifty substandard milk powder brands were exposed after a recent spot-check of 23,476 urban and rural wholesale and retail markets by 14,600 inspectors from the provincial health department.


(China Daily May 25, 2004)

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