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Vice-mayor lauds citywide campaign
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Residents in Shenzhen city of Guangdong Province can look forward to safer and better quality food, thanks to the success of a citywide campaign, a top official said yesterday.

"Every wholesale market for agricultural products is now included in our food safety system," Zhuo Qinrui, the vice-mayor of Shenzhen, told a meeting to mark the end of the campaign.

"In addition, we have made giant strides in tackling the use of banned pesticides, veterinary drugs and feed additives at processing plants," he said.

Each of the city's 620 food production and processing companies has now signed a quality and safety commitment letter with the government, he said.

Furthermore, all of the city's restaurants have set up monitoring systems so that the raw materials they use can be traced back to their source, he said.

To ensure the safety and quality of pork products, the government will provide funding for four modern slaughterhouses, the construction of three of which will start this month, Zhou said.

The new abatoirs will replace the city's 16 existing medium- and small-sized workshops.

According to official figures, about 200,000 law enforcement officials took part in the food campaign.

Over the four months, they investigated 50,000 cases involving violations of product quality and food safety regulations and destroyed illegal products with a total value of nearly 192 million yuan ($26 million).

They also closed down some 34,000 unregistered businesses and revoked 262 licenses.

(China Daily January 9, 2008)

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