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Chinese mainland suspends imports of 948 DEHP-tainted products from Taiwan

Jun 13, 2011 Trade

The Chinese mainland has suspended imports of 948 Taiwanese products, including beverages, food products and food additives that are produced by 280 companies suspected of using a cancer-causing plastic additive, according to a notice issued by the Food Safety Commission on Friday.

The Food Safety Commission under the State Council, or cabinet, has ordered upgraded inspections and instant recalls of beverages, food products and additives contaminated with DEHP.

Mainland authorities have launched a sample survey of 6,100 types of beverages, food products and additives being sold on the mainland. Eight products have been found contaminated with DEHP so far.

The contaminated products have been recalled, said the food safety commission, adding that no instant noodles in the 140 inspection samples had been found to contain DEHP.

China's General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine issued an import ban on June 1, when the quality watchdog said the mainland would suspend imports of 22 types of beverages, food products and additives from Taiwan that are produced by companies suspected of using bis(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate (DEHP).

In mid May, Taiwan's health department announced it had found food addictive supplier Yu Shen Chemical Co. to have illegally added cancerogenic plasticizer DEHP in clouding agents and sold toxic agents to a number of food and beverage producers.

The plasticizer contamination scandal has swept the island's beverage and food industry, with the toxic substances even found in products sold by high-end restaurants and pharmacies.