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Inspections find more Sudan I food
By Zheng Caixiong, Zheng Yanyan (China Daily)
Updated: 2005-04-01 06:32

A couple enjoy KFC food in a Shanghai KFC outlet. [shanghaistar]
More food products containing Sudan I, a red dye believed to possibly cause cancer, have been found in Beijing and Guangzhou.

An inspection by the authorities between March 19 and 29 in the capital city found 25 food products that contained Sudan I, according to the China News Service.

South China's Guangdong Province started a province-wide inspection on suspected Sudan I affected products yesterday, targeting food manufacturers, companies and supermarkets.

The inspection was triggered after three new chilli oils were found to contain the dye on Monday in Foshan in the Pearl River Delta, which borders Hong Kong and Macao special administrative regions, said an official from Guangdong Provincial Administration of Quality Supervision.

Meanwhile, the Dalian Institute of Product Quality Supervision and Inspection, in Northeast China's Liaoning Province, has come up with a special test to check food for Sudan I.

The General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine and the Standardization Administration jointly issued the new standard on March 29.

The test costs less to carry out and is easier and quicker to do.

It can be applied to most food products and will be used across China shortly, said Wang Chunyan, head of Dalian's institute.

She added that the final test result is very accurate with almost no chance of any mistakes.

The European Union's detection test can only be applied to a small range of foods and is more complicated.

Plus, each instrument used by the EU costs 2 million yuan (US$241,000), a lot of money to find in a short time, said chief of the detection staff Pan Wei.

Sudan I was first found on the mainland on March 4, when the Beijing authorities found a pepper sauce, Meiweiyuan, produced by the Heinz Meiweiyuan (Guangzhou) Food Co Ltd, based in Guangdong capital Guangzhou, contained Sudan I.

On the same day, the State Administration for Quality Super-vision, Inspection and Quarantine told the Heinz company to recall its affected products.

There have since been many reports about new findings of Sudan I.

Currently in Beijing, quality supervision authorities are tracing where the 25 newly-found con-taminated products go to and their raw materials come from.

Industry and commerce authorities have ordered that the products be removed from shelves and have sealed the warehouses of retailers involved. Health officials are inspecting restaurants which use such products.

Manufacturers of these food products are required to set up venues for recall within three days.

In Guangzhou, the authorities aim to ensure all food products sold in Guangdong reach the State's hygiene standards and protect people's health, the quality supervision official told China Daily.

The three new chilli oils with Sudan I were produced by three companies on the outskirts of Guangzhou. Law enforcement personnel have shut them down for further investigation.

Meanwhile, the Heinz Meiweiyuan (Guangzhou) Food Co Ltd destroyed more than 300,000 chilli sauces and chilli oils suspected to contain Sudan I in Guangzhou on Monday.

Suspected products have been recalled by the company from around the country since its products were found to contain the problem substance last month.

(China Daily 04/01/2005 page3)

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