Not So Great Britain

Made in China: tainted food, fake drugs and dodgy paint | July 6, 2007

China is facing a global crisis of consumer confidence as the country’s food safety watchdog acknowledged this week that almost a fifth of the domestic products it inspects fail to reach minimum standards. Following a number of contamination scandals in the US, the world’s biggest exporter is struggling to prove that it can match quality with quantity.In the first half of 2007, 19.1% of products made for domestic consumption were found to be substandard, the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine said in a statement on Tuesday. Among products made by small firms, the failure rate was nearly 30%.

“These are not isolated cases,” Han Yi, director of the administration’s quality control and inspection department, told the state media. Underlining his concerns, officials said hundreds of bottles of fake human blood protein were found in hospitals and excessive amounts of additives and preservatives were detected in children’s snacks.

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