Asia food safety has been put under a lot of pressure in the past year, but with an increase in wealth by most people in Asia, food safety authorities have to now consider meeting the higher expectations of consumers. Here is a quick recap of some food scandals in the past year;
- In the middle of the year, American food giant McDonald’s, faced a major scandal in China. Footage was discovered of their chicken suppliers mixing expired meat with the meat they prepare their products with
- Recently, Taiwan was faced with the ‘gutter oil’ (oil made from the bi-products of other goods) scam, where food makers, bakeries and restaurant were using the oil to make their products
One reason why there has been a rise of food safety scandals around Asia is due to the change in social classes. With more people entering into the middle class system, the globalisation of the food chain has made it harder for authorities to regulate and combat the risks. Many Asian countries still delegate their food safety issues to various ministries and agencies. This lacks a central governance which make a lot more incidences slip through cracks.
Furthermore, with an increase demand for food products, it jeopardises the food chain. Food safety is important throughout the entire production process. From the crops to the product on the shelves, everything needs to run smoothly. However, currently, Asia lacks the rules to cover the entire process. For example, Taiwan and Japan use a large amount of pesticides to keep their crops healthy – this is something that needs to be regulated properly to avoid food poisoning.
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