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China gives press more freedom - for food safety [Copy link] 中文

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Post time 2011-5-16 08:39:58 |Display all floors
BEIJING - TOXIC bean sprouts, filthy cooking oil, drug-tainted pork: The relentless headlines in Chinese media have churned up queasy feelings for months about the dangers lurking in the nation's dinner bowls.

The stories are grim reading but show China's usually strict censors are allowing the press more latitude to help it monitor a food industry long riddled with problems.

The central government has been cautiously encouraging a sudden burst in food safety muckraking. That's in contrast to before the new food safety campaign, when local officials would delay or quash reporting on food safety or the provincial government had to give permission for coverage of food scandals, said Peter Leedham, a China-based food testing executive.

'It was very tightly controlled. That seems to have gone now. There's much more openness,' said Mr Leedham, the managing director of Eurofins Technology Service in Suzhou.

Few think the looser controls on food reporting signal a broader reform of Chinese media, which remains strictly controlled by the ruling Communist Party. Blogging and publishing are also muzzled, and those who challenge the government risk being harassed or detained. Some, like the writer and Nobel Peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo, have been convicted of inciting to subvert state power for their dissident writings. Liu is currently serving an 11-year prison term.

'Is it a US-style openness?' said Christopher Hickey, the US Food and Drug Administration's country director for China. 'Clearly not, but I do think it's one of these areas where there is a limited amount of freedom, more than there was in the past.' -- AP
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Post time 2011-5-16 08:47:49 |Display all floors
An independent people-trusted agency would be helpful to contrast to the government standard, would be helpful or not?
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Post time 2011-5-16 10:16:39 |Display all floors
The western, or American, factory accessment and ISO have greatly improved the quality of products in China.

It is not from government, but from independent organizations, though Guanxi is involved, more or less.

The news reports revealed food scandals greatly raised the awareness of Chinese on food safety.

But in the end, the work of government is the most important.

Government of China have enough power to create and change the game rules. Government should shoulder the responsibilities.

Governemnt of China = (congress + government + juridical power) of western style.
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Post time 2011-5-16 10:35:37 |Display all floors

Reply #3 468259058's post

China's strength in oversight is growing

Ir would be nice to see that having greater effect in the restaurant industry as well
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Post time 2011-5-16 10:58:58 |Display all floors
Originally posted by blueskies88 at 2011-5-16 10:35
China's strength in oversight is growing

Ir would be nice to see that having greater effect in the restaurant industry as well
.
China's strength in oversight is growing.
+++++++++++
I don't know if it is right, compare with one year ago? compare with Mao's era?

Many Congress members have supported to control food safety with more and more severe punishments including death penalty.

Since Deng's reform, the number of such National Congress memebers have reached the largest by the time of latest National congress conference this year.

In Chinese proverb:
Control the society with severe punishments during war period and during troubled time.

That is to say, food scandals turns to be a serious issue, like the situation in housing market.
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Post time 2011-5-16 11:41:30 |Display all floors

Reply #5 468259058's post

I never understood the severity of China's punishment system except to say that a rehabilitaion and probabtion system is not yet assembled or perhaps is not a real concern as yet
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Post time 2011-5-16 11:42:10 |Display all floors
This is the kind of HR thing that the West thrives on
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