Friday, September 07, 2007

One Reason Why Were Not Complaining about Chinese Products

I wondered why the Chinese products safety issue was not making much noise here. It turns out that it's the Chinese who are doing the complaining..

According to a Yomiuri report, on September 5, Japanese METI Minister Akira Amari and Chinese Commerce Minister Bo Xilai held a bilateral meeting in Sydney, Australia, on the eve of the annual APEC Summit, where Minister Bo requested that Japan ease regulations on pesticide residues and additives in agricultural products.

A spate of food scares in 2002 over mainly excessive amounts of pesticide residues on Chinese spinach led to tighter inspections, regulations and in 2003 legislation that went into effect last year. According to the article, Chinese authorities have been seeking a rollback of these measures to no avail. METI Minister Amari pushed back in light of the most recent developments, demanding stricter measures and better disclosure.

This does not explain the lack of media attention to made-in-China toys and textiles, but it does address the most immediate concern over our nearest supply of fresh foods. Read on if you want more background..

So now I know at least part of the story. My excuse for my total ignorance? I was out of the country at the time.

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