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Cabinet sets up task force to handle food safety crisis

Cabinet sets up task force to handle food safety crisis

Taipei, March 15 (CNA) The Cabinet will set up an inter-ministerial task force to deal with the latest food scare over meats potentially contaminated with banned drugs or viruses, Premier Sean Chen said Thursday. The step came in the wake of recent discoveries of toxic leanness enhancing drugs in some brands of imported beef, reports that some locally produced pork products also contained the drugs, and outbreaks of a highly pathogenic strain of the H5N2 bird flu virus on local chicken farms. The task force will allow the government to integrate its strength, adopt stronger measures and respond more quickly to the situation, Chen said in a weekly Cabinet meeting. He said the government needs to comprehensively examine every segment of the country's food supply chain and strictly implement an inspection system. In addition, the government must act immediately to amend and strengthen relevant laws wherever necessary, he said. "We must rebuild people's confidence in food safety in the shortest possible time," the premier said. Chen said the Cabinet should also coordinate with local governments to prevent substandard meat products from entering the market. Meanwhile, the Council of Agriculture (COA) is considering an amendment to the Veterinary Drugs Control Act to increase the penalties for offenders and to mandate that their names be published, according to COA deputy chief Huang Yu-tsai. (By Chiachen Hsieh and Y.F. Low)


Updated : 2021-10-23 19:09 GMT+08:00