China blocks US shipments amid food safety row
06.08.07, 8:26 AM ET
BEIJING (XFN-ASIA) - China has returned health pill and food shipments from the United States for not reaching minimum safety standards, government officials said.
In a statement on its website, the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine said they had turned down three shipments of raisins and health supplements following inspection.
'The products failed to meet the sanitary standards of China,' the short statement said, adding that levels of bacteria and sulphur dioxide were too high.
The products have either been destroyed or sent back, the statement added, saying inspections happened in recent days, without being more specific.
The move comes after US authorities rejected 257 Chinese food shipments in April, far more than from any other country.
It also comes against the background of the highly-publicised contamination of dog and cat food from China suspected of killing thousands of pets.
The pet food was found to have been tainted with the chemical melamine, a substance used in fertilisers and plastics, which found its way into wheat gluten exported from China for the US pet food and animal feed markets.
The US has rejected hundreds of Chinese products ranging from tainted dietary supplements and toxic cosmetics to fish and herbal teas in recent months for poor standards of hygiene.
The products that were blocked by China came from K-Max Health Products Co., CMO Distribution Center of America Inc., and Supervalu (nyse: SVU - news - people ) International Division, according to the statement on the website.
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