China toxic dumplings spark food scare in Japan

(not sure of this should be in ‘Food’, Health’ or the dreaded ‘IP’ forum…move as required)

It looks like this is in reference to Chinese made frozen gyoza. We do not buy these, but may be of interest to some. Perhaps restaurateurs on the forum who buy in bulk.

[quote] China toxic dumplings spark food scare in Japan
By George Nishiyama Thu Jan 31, 1:50 AM ET

TOKYO (Reuters) - Dozens more people in Japan on Thursday said they fell sick after eating Chinese-made food, a day after Japanese food companies recalled pesticide-contaminated dumplings from China that sickened 10 people

he food scare has triggered a nationwide probe into possible additional cases of food poisoning, while Japan’s top government spokesman questioned China’s attitude to food safety only weeks after the country said it had improved standards.

Japanese media and opposition lawmakers have also suggested Japan’s initial response to the problem may have been too slow.

“I have two children, boys aged four and two. They love dumplings. Japanese people love dumplings,” said Democratic Party parliamentarian Yuichiro Hata. “This is something that threatens peoples’ lives.”

Japan Tobacco Inc said on Wednesday its subsidiary, JT Foods Co., would recall the frozen dumplings and other food made at the same Chinese factory, as television broadcasters flashed warnings to viewers not to eat the products.

Around 80 people in Japan have complained of getting sick from eating food made in China, TV Asahi said. Restaurants and schools took Chinese-made food off their menus, other media said.

The Chinese Embassy in Japan said the company involved had been banned from exporting, and the police were helping the national quality watchdog probe the case. But it also asked Japan to provide more information.

“The Chinese side is willing to proactively cooperate, to get to the bottom of this matter as soon as possible,” the embassy said in a statement on its Web site (

An official at China’s quality watchdog told Reuters there was an “initial conclusion” to the investigation, but the official would not elaborate, saying only that it would hold a news conference later in the day.

The scandal is the latest in a string of disputes over the safety of Chinese products from toys to toothpaste. Earlier this month, China declared that its campaign to ensure food and product safety had been a complete success.

“I don’t want to think that there is any difference among countries concerning food safety, but it seems there was a sense on the Chinese side that ‘this is probably ok’,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Nobutaka Machimura told a news conference.

“We want the Chinese side to properly investigate the situation,” he added, pointing out that China was hit by a series of food safety scares last year.

The Health Ministry has told 19 companies selling products made at the Chinese factory in question not sell the goods until they have been declared safe for consumption, it said in a statement.

Health Minister Yoichi Masuzoe told a parliamentary committee that as of Thursday morning, the government had been consulted by several prefectures but the checks were ongoing and there had so far been no official confirmation of other cases of poisoning.

“The government will collect further information and first, prevent the spread of harm, clarify the cause and take steps to prevent a reoccurance,” Masuzoe said.

Japan has not been immune to its own food scares. A number of Japanese confectioners admitted last year to having wrongly labeled production and expiry dates for cookies and rice cakes.

No widespread health hazards, however, have hit the country since more than 10,000 people suffered food poisoning after drinking tainted milk in 2000.

(Additional reporting by Linda Sieg and Chisa Fujioka in Tokyo and Ben Blanchard in Beijing) … _food_dc_2[/quote]

bon appetit…