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Diseased pork in China poses danger to consumers

The Chinese State Administration of Industry and Commerce issued an urgent notice to inform consumers and local law enforcement officers that 'diseased pork' is being sold in some regions of the country.

The notice said that some of the sick pigs were slaughtered earlier than scheduled. It stated, "The pork has entered the market and poses a danger to consumers' health."


The administration urged local law enforcement officers to inspect all purchases, ask for safety certificates for the pork and to make purchase and sales ledgers. The announcement further said that problematic pork should be seized and destroyed.


Safe pork supply
According to China Daily, Cai Jun, director of the publicity department of the administration said, "We issued the notice to ensure a safe pork supply during the coming Spring Festival." The festival was held this weekend.


Jun said, “Last month, due to the severe cold, diseases spread among pigs in several parts of the country.”


However, neither the notice nor Jun disclosed specific places where the diseased pork was found or the type of diseases that were detected.


Diseases
The Ministry of Agriculture refused to comment on the issue. However, posts on an online forum at www.liaozhu.com, a website for pig farmers and pork dealers, revealed that diseases among pigs were detected in Jilin, Gansu and Shandong provinces.


According to Cheng Guoshun, executive director of the Chinese Farmers Research Center at the Zhou Enlai School of Government, Nankai University diseased pork in the market might hurt rural consumers far more than their urban counterparts as food inspections in the urban areas are relatively stricter, illegal purchases are less likely to occur.

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