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Cancer-causing sauce found in Beijing
Updated: 2005-03-05 01:01

Beijing's food safety office said Friday that it found the cancer-causing colorant, Sudan I, in a brand of pepper sauce brand in the city.

The pepper sauce, Meiweiyuan, produced by the Guangzhou-based Heinz Meiweiyuan Food Co. Ltd, was spotted after an inspection of 17 brands of condiments by the city's food safety office, the entry-exit inspection and quarantine bureau, and the commerce bureau.

The producer, a subsidiary of the Heinz Company of the United States, has been ordered to recall its product.

The office said that the city will launch a broader sample inspection on foods produced by foreign companies and joint ventures.

Sudan-I is a red dye used for coloring solvents, oils, waxes, petrol and shoe and floor polishes. It cannot safely be used in food because it can contribute to an increased risk of cancer.

The dye was found by the Food Standards Agency of Britain on Feb. 18 in a batch of chili powder made by Premier Foods, one of the largest food and beverage companies in Britain. The agency also found some products of other companies, including Schweppes, Coca Cola, Unilever and Heinz, to contain Sudan-I.

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