China vows tight measures against food safety violations

Updated: 2011-05-16 15:36
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BEIJING -- Chinese Vice Premier Li Keqiang has pledged to take heavy-handed measures following food safety violations.

Li, also head of the food safety commission under the State Council, or China's Cabinet, made the remarks Friday at the conclusion of a nine-day seminar on food safety, which was attended by chief officials at ministry and province levels.

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Li urges adopting strict and harsh punishments for food safety violations in order to deter violations in the most effective manner.

"Offenders in the food safety area should receive their due consequences for the violations," Li said.

Li also urges improving the enterprise responsibility system in the food sector.

All food enterprises should be covered in a food safety credit system, and those that have seriously violated the law and regulations should be closed and prohibited from entering the food sector in the future, Li said.

He also called on government departments to intensify supervision and to leave no "blind spot" in the supervision.

"Cases of official's malpractice in the food safety area should be seriously investigated and punished," he said.

Moreover, Li called for better transparency in food safety information to respond to the public's concerns and deal with food safety emergencies in the timeliest manner.

"Over the past decades, China has managed to provide the people with sufficient food, and we must make efforts to provide them with safe food," Li said.

He also stressed that promoting food safety in China will help boost the domestic and international market of various Chinese products, as well as maintain social harmony.