TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — China has stopped importing live grouper fish from two farms in Taiwan after excessive levels of banned drugs were found inside the animals, reports said Friday (Dec. 7).
The ban was reminiscent of earlier Chinese actions halting the import of pineapples, wax apples, and sugar apples after allegations that bugs had been found inside the fruit. The bans led to protests and forced Taiwan exporters to seek other markets for their products, including Japan and Singapore.
Responding to the latest issue, Council of Agriculture (COA) Minister Chen Chi-chung (陳吉仲) said Taiwan’s grouper exports were proceeding as usual. The authorities would consider both the allegations by China’s customs and the explanations by the Taiwan fish breeders before reaching a decision on the issue, CNA reported.
On Dec. 30, inspectors in Xiamen reportedly found two types of banned chemical products inside live fish, leading to an immediate ban on other fish from the same two farms and to more thorough testing of other live fish from Taiwan in general. The two businesses denied having administered illegal substances to their fish.