Tainted products to be removed in Taiwan «gutter oil» scandal

09-Sep-2014 - Taiwan

Taiwanese Premier Jiang Yi-huah said Friday that all products said to be tainted by recycled waste oil must be taken off shop shelves, the state-run Central News Agency (CNA) reported. Chang Guann Co., a food oil manufacturer based in southern Kaohsiung, was found Thursday to have added "gutter oil," a mixture of oil from grease traps, restaurant drains and sewers, to one of its lard products. The company apologized Thursday after investigators exposed the scandal, which involved some 780 tons of processed oil being marketed as "fragrant lard oil." Food and Drug Administration Director-General Yeh Ming-kung told a news conference on Friday that the lard oil had been sold to 235 food companies, restaurants, and bakeries. Since Thursday, some of affected companies, such as Wei Chuan Foods, one of Taiwan's oldest food companies, have recalled dozens of affected products. A taskforce has been established Friday to deal with the incident, CNA reported cabinet spokesperson Sun Lih-chyun as saying. "To ensure consumers' safety, Premier Jiang ordered that all products said to be tainted by recycled waste oil must be taken from shelves over the coming weekend," Sun said. "He [Jiang] vowed to severely punish all dishonest parties involved in the illegality," Sun said. Minister of Health and Welfare Chiu Wen-ta said Chang Guann could face a fine of up to 50 million Taiwan dollars (1.7 million US dollars). (dpa)

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