Probe into tainted China dumplings

Dozens fall ill in Japan in latest scare to hit Chinese-made produce.

    The latest safety scare comes weeks after a promised crackdown on safety standards [Reuters]
    Last year saw a spate over safety scares around the world over Chinese made food and other products, ranging from toothpaste to car tyres.

    With China's economy heavily-reliant on the export market, the government pledged to crackdown on safety inspections in an effort to shore up consumer confidence.

    After authorities were first alerted to the latest scare on Wednesday, all frozen dumplings and other food made by the Tianyang Food factory in the northern province of Hebei were immediately recalled.

    The Chinese-made dumplings are known
    as gyoza in Japan [JT Foods]

    Japan's health ministry and police said at least 10 people, one of them in serious condition, were treated for food poisoning in after eating the dumplings.

    By Thursday about 450 people had reportedly fallen ill after eating the dumplings or other products made by the Chinese company, a survey by Japan's Kyodo news agency showed.

    Japanese police said they suspected that products imported by Japan's JT Foods Co may have been contaminated by pesticide either during the production or packaging process.

    Nobutaka Machimura, the Japanese chief cabinet secretary, questioned China's attitude toward quality control, saying: "it seems there was a sense on the Chinese side that 'this is probably ok'."

    China's General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine, has also told the manufacturer of the frozen dumplings to stop production and exports until the cause of the contamination can be determined.

    Liu Jianchao, a Chinese foreign ministry spokesman, said the government "is doing its best to clear this up".

    "This is the attitude we should take to really show our responsibility to consumers," he said, urging Japanese authorities to provide more details to help investigations.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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