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Taiwan vegetable farmer arrested for forging ‘organic’ label on produce

Poor quality vegetables from unknown origins find their way into school lunches

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Police seize vegetables from unknown sources in packages bearing forged labels. (Second Special Police photo)

Police seize vegetables from unknown sources in packages bearing forged labels. (Second Special Police photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The police arrested a Tainan vegetable farmer surnamed Chen (陳) for forging organic certification labels to continue selling his produce to the local farmers’ association.

CNA reported that the farmers’ association purchased and delivered around 250 kilograms of Chen’s vegetables to two junior high schools in Tainan, where they were served to students for lunch.

A nutritionist at one of the schools contacted the provider named on the label after noticing the vegetables’ bad quality and torn labels on the packaging. The provider responded that it did not deliver vegetables to schools, prompting the school to make a report to the police.

CNA cited the police as saying that Chen’s organic certification was revoked in 2020 after authorities found excessive amounts of residual pesticide on his produce as well as the illegal use of outdated certification labels.

In order to continue working with the farmers’ association as a provider, Chen began buying packaged vegetables at supermarkets and removing organic certification labels from the bags. Then, he attached them to packages of vegetables from unknown sources, along with forged labels containing false information.

After searching Chen’s farm and residence, the police seized forged order summaries, school delivery receipts, tags, farmers’ receipts, organic certification sticker labels, a USB, and a cellphone. Chen will be charged with Trademark Act violation, fraud, and forgery, according to CNA.


Updated : 2022-01-27 14:25 GMT+08:00

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