Here are a couple of interesting articles from the International Herald Tribune
(Asia-pacific Edition) which are worth sharing with you guys. It is not my intention to defend China's current food safety issues, just to broaden everyone's perspective on it in light of history and the global backdrop.
Excerpt dated July 9, 2007:
Phony fertilizer destroys crops. Store shelves are filled with deodorized rotten eggs, and chemical glucose is passed off as honey. Exports slump when European regulators find dangerous bacteria in packaged meat.
More product safety scandals in China? Not this time. These quality problems prompted a sluggish U.S. government to tighten food and drug regulation 101 years ago, when President Theodore Roosevelt signed the act that created the Food and Drug Administration.
Like America's industrializing economy of a century ago, China's is powered by zealous entrepreneurs who sometimes act like pirates. In both cases there were epidemics of fatal fakes, and regulators too inept, corrupt or hamstrung to do much about it...
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Excerpt from another article, dated July 13, 2007:
Black pepper with salmonella from India. Crabmeat from Mexico that is too filthy to eat. Candy from Denmark that is mislabeled. At a time when Chinese imports are under fire for being contaminated or defective, records in the United States suggest that China is not the only country that has problems with its exports.
In fact, American inspectors have stopped more food shipmentsfrom India and Mexico in the last year than they have from China, according to an analysis of data maintained by the Food and Drug Administration.
And despite China's much-publicized problems with contaminated seafood, including a temporary ban late last month on imports offive species of farm-raised seafood from China, U.S. inspectors refused produce from the Dominican Republic and candy from Denmark more often.
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