DOH implements strict meat inspection measures
All meat products imported into Taiwan will be inspected to ensure they are free of beta agonists starting next week, ROC Vice Premier Chiang Yi-hua said March 16.
Meat that fails to satisfy the government’s stringent safety requirements will be destroyed, added the Food and Drug Administration under the Department of Health.
“The DOH will ensure food safety by using the strictest possible standards to screen out meat products containing prohibited substances,” Chiang said.
He made the remarks after presiding over an Executive Yuan task force meeting, called in the wake of a food scandal in which both imported and locally grown meat products were found to contain various types of beta agonists, or leanness enhancers.
Ractopamine is one type of beta agonist. It is illegal in Taiwan but permitted in the U.S. Other types of beta agonists such as salbutamol, cimaterol and clenbuterol are prohibited worldwide.
Recent inspections found that some meat products sold in Taiwan contained not only ractopamine but also salbutamol.
The Executive Yuan task force included officials from the Council of Agriculture, National Science Council, Ministry of the Interior, Department of Health, the Environmental Protection Administration and Ministry of Economic Affairs and the Government Information Office.
“We are also seeking to incorporate experts and civic groups concerned with food safety issues into our inspection process, to better protect consumers,” the vice premier said.