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Food Safety Program to Ensure Successful 2008 Games

Beijing has launched a program to ensure food safety for the 2008 Olympics, to meet mounting accommodation demands expected by participants, journalists, and spectators.

The Beijing 2008 Olympics Food Safety Program will focus on the establishment of a food safety standards system, based on the World Health Organization's food standards. The measures include 80 standards for harmful substances, 50 standards for food examination and 15 standards for packaging.

Beijing will also set up a series of food storage bases, conducting routine environmental surveillance and employing sampling tests to ensure products cope with the urgent scheduling demands of the Olympics.

The plan will also require real-time monitoring of designated food supplying companies and bases, qualification standards for food services, establishment of food distribution centers and electronic labeling of food.

Deputy director of the Food Safety Committee of Beijing's municipal government, Zhang Zhikuan says that the city expects to receive nearly 250,000 delegates, working staff and journalists. A spectatorship of seven million is expected for the occasion, with more than 13 million meals to be served in total.

Athletes and visitors alike will certainly dine out during the Olympic Games. A selection of recommended restaurants will be available for their convenience.

To minimize the risks athletes face while dining outside the restricted Olympic areas, designated restaurants across the city will be noted in the official handbooks prepared for the athletes. Currently, rules for "recommended restaurants" are under consideration.

Additionally, as a co-host during the 2008 Olympic Games, the city of Qingdao will launch an Olympic Food Project during the second half of 2005.

(Xinhua News Agency October 9, 2005)

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