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Consumers' Confidence in Food Safety Low

Consumer's confidence index over all kinds of food security is below 50 percent, said Huang Hai, assistant minister of commerce on Monday at a press conference on food security.


About 8 percent of domestic food cannot reach the national qualification standards for food security, and some 7 percent of vegetable products exceed the standards for pesticide residue, Huang said.


In recent years, thanks to some effective measures taken by the government to enhance supervision over food security, the general situation of food security concerning vegetables, meat, grains, fruits, dairy products, aquatic products and other food has turned better, he said.


"But the domestic food security situation is still severe," he said, noting some new types of food security problems such as the cancer-causing Sudan I red dye.


The red dye was first discovered early March this year in a pepper sauce made by a Heinz subsidiary, the Heinz Meiweiyuan Food Co. based in Guangzhou, capital of Guangdong Province in south China. A month later China's state quality watchdog spotted the cancer-causing Sudan I in 88 kinds of food and food additives produced by 30 Chinese companies.


The supervision work over food security is still weak in suburbs and rural areas, Huang said, expressing the country's determination to improve food quality through legislative means, green market authentication and improvement of food security credit files.


(Xinhua News Agency July 19, 2005)


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