Food safety to be boosted for festival

Six food safety inspector missions have been set up to ensure the quality of products for the Mid-Autumn Festival which begins next month.

Parts of a slaughtered pig carried on a motorbike in HCMC. The city has set up squads for inspecting food safety during the Mid-Autumn Festival

Deputy Minister of Health Trinh Quan Huan's decision to randomly inspect food production will take place between August 22 and September 22, and comes in light of widespread violations of food safety last year.

Director of the Ministry of Health's Vietnam Food Administration Nguyen Cong Khan said the inspectors will take between 10 and 40 random samples from large enterprises and supermarkets, and small and medium-sized businesses and markets will be checked by inspectors at the district level.

"If the inspectors detect any serious violation, they must report to the VFA within two days thus the VFA can submit the case to the Prime Minister," Khan said.

Inspection results must be reported to the VFA before September 25 and offending enterprises will be fined up to VND100 million (US$4,870) based on their levels of violation, he said.

The missions will include inspectors from a number of ministries including health, industry and trade, agriculture and rural development, and will check the quality of ingredients, materials, working conditions and advertising in a range of products.

Moon cakes, sweets, liquor, soft drink and meat are among the popular products inspectors will target in towns and provinces across the country including Hanoi , HCM City , Dong Nai, Binh Duong, Tay Ninh and Bac Giang.

Officials in HCM City suspended 21 out of 97 moon cake producers in 2010 for violating food safety regulations in the lead up to the festival.

Violator Pham Nguyen Confectionary Joint-Stock Company in Binh Tan district did not have any food safety certification for their materials, health certificates for workers or food safety training certification.

Source: Vietnamplus

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