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Current Position:Home » News » Recalls & Alerts » Alerts & Food Safety » Topic

NZ berry grower: "China's food safety is among the best"

Zoom in font  Zoom out font Published: 2017-06-07  Views: 10
Core Tip: David Berry is a man on a mission - to change the negative view people have of Chinese food safety standards.
David Berry is a man on a mission - to change the negative view people have of Chinese food safety standards.

The United Kingdom-based Kiwi is the owner of a berry processing plant in Shandong province which has been caught up in food scares related to other berry exporters, although none of his products have ever been recalled.

Chief of the scares was the Ministry for Primary Industries' (MPI) recall in 2015 of frozen blackberries and strawberries grown in China, because of a supposed risk of hepatitis A.

In fact, tests failed to reveal any problems with the berries. Australian company Patties Foods had $14 million wiped from its profits over similar claims, and it decided to exit the frozen berry business.

"These measures, taken together, bring China to the forefront of safe food producers as is increasingly recognised by some leading world fruit industry users. The unfortunate thing is these measures are not well communicated so public perception is lagging behind the reality.

Chief executive of the NZ China Council, Stephen Jacobi, said that in China consumers were becoming more sensitive to issues of quality and "clearly suppliers are responding to this".

Berry does not deny China has experienced serious food safety problems, especially the scandal in 2008 when melamine was found to have been added to milk, causing the deaths of children.

Health regulators do not always get it right, he said, pointing to the 2011 case when German bean sprouts killed 22 people and made thousands ill. Initially the deaths were blamed on vegetables imported from Spain.
 
 
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