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article imageQuality of online food to be monitored in China

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By Valerie Benguiat     Feb 25, 2013 in World
Yesterday, Beijing Times reported that food purchased online will be monitored by the Beijing Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Quality control on powdered milk and infant products will be given special attention.
Currently, Beijing Center for Disease Control and Prevention monitors foods that carry a high risk in order to prevent events like the 2008 milk scandal.
In 2008, powder milk and infant formula were found to contain melamine, which can cause kidney stones and kidney failure.
According to BBC, melamine was added to raw milk to make it appear higher in protein, led to the deaths of six babies and made some 300,000 ill.
The head of Sanlu diary, the company guilty of distributing around 900 tons of tainted milk, was given life imprisonment, and two men were executed over this crime.
Until recently, the Beijing Center for Disease Control and Prevention only monitored supermarkets, food stores and agricultural markets, but given the rise of online purchasing, the authorities will also monitor food bought online.
We hope the monitoring system will cover more than 80 percent of food purchase channels and locations, said Zhao Yao, official with Beijing Center for Disease Control and Prevention, according to China Daily.
Earlier this month, the Chinese police seized 350 suspects involved in food-related crimes regarding quality problems.
There has been a recent crackdown on food-related criminal cases, and there are currently 120 cases open. The focus is mainly on the quality of cooking oil, meat and other products that are on greater demand during the Chinese New Year festivities.
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