Total Quality Management Issues In Food Industry Of China Essay
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Background of Food Quality Control in China
In the food industry, there are some manufactures who justify that food products saying that there foods are not bad for a healthy life. It is the bad diet that actually harms the general health of an individual. They present this justification because, to every economy, the health of its economic agents has become a critical issue. In this view, this research paper is written to make analysis of quality problems found in food market of Chine. The description will be provided in the next section. It is necessary that every individual should distinguish between unsafe products and practices as well as safe products and practices .
Food Related Quality Problems Found In China
Before making a discussion on quality concerns found in Chinese markets, it is important to know that China’s food production system is highly unregulated which operates in an environment where the drive for higher work productivity and lucrative profit margins outweighs the need to adhere strictly to most basic sanitary and safety measures. The food manufacturing and processing companies have increasingly overused and misused hundreds of chemicals. Many of the food chemicals which they use are either banned from use or are toxic to health. Their frequent use has resulted in sickness and death of thousands of Chinese people throughout China.
In September 2012, the suspected use of gutter oil was revealed in an ongoing investigation. It was found that the Chinese pharmaceutical industry was using that gutter oil as a raw material. This was the massive scandal in Taiwan which involved the use of 240 tons of gutter oil. The scandal affected many large companies and thousands of eateries in the food industry which went broke in September 2014.
The scandal came to light during the Mid-Autumn Festival when the enthusiasm for giving and use of a traditional seasonal snack, moon-cakes, was about to reach its peak level. A Taiwanese food-safety agency spread the alarm that that the largest bakery chain in the city, branches of 7-Eleven as well as Starbucks may be selling those pastries prepared with gutter oil. The South China Morning Post (SCMP) in Hong Kong reported that the well-known breakfast staple, pineapple buns, offered in branches of 7-Eleven and Maxim’s Cakes, as well as Starbucks outlets could have been prepared with gutter oil. This gutter oil is a concern because it is potentially harmful oil which is extracted from food wastes, by-product of tanneries and offal .
In China, illegally recycled oil has appeared as a major and serious issue concerning food safety. This illegally recycled oil is known with the name of gutter oil that has raised total quality management concerns in the food industry. This oil is not only dangerous due to poor sanitation related to illegal recycling operations. The use of such recycled oil contains carcinogens such as aflatoxin and benzopyrene which are really very harmful to human health in every aspect.
Concerns Raised By Food Regulators in China
The recycled gutter oil scandal, which has been discussed in the previous section, reflects series of incidents in 2013 that have cause the local food authorities to raise concerns about the strict adherence to food quality standards all over the Taiwan. In all those events, many food companies were found to mix diluted olive oil, cooking oils and illegal coloring agents with cheaper products like cottonseed oil which were strictly dangerous to health concerns.
In response to these illegal activities, local food authorities are making arrangements to control the gutter oil scandal that has raised concerns and fears about the health of citizens consuming the affected food items. Food authorities are also strictly examining the degree to which the gutter oil has been exported to Macau, mainland China and Hong Kong.
Hong Kong’s Center for Food Safety, to control the gutter oil use and for health safety of citizens, has managed to remove pineapple cakes prepared from such gutter oil purchased from a Taiwan manufacturer, Chang Guann, caught in the scandal. The Centre for Food Safety banned all oil imports and animal fat from Taiwan after Chang Guann, Kaohsiung oil supplier, was found to sell those edible oils which contained industrial lard oil and gutter oil. This gutter oil is actually recycled from leather processing and restaurants which is harmful to human health, as discussed earlier.
In response to many illegal activities and careless practices in the food/oil industry, health authorities are planning to further tighten quality controls and food safety standards. The new regulations are going to be strictly enforced on every trader who imports, sells or attempts to produce edible oil. Any trader or manufacture not complying with the orders issued by food and health authorities would be liable to an imprisonment of up to twelve months and maximum penalty of HK$100,000 .
Barber, E. (2014, Setember 08). ‘Gutter Oil’ Scandal Raises Food-Safety Fears Once Again in Greater China. Retrieved February 10, 2015, from Time News and Magazine: http://time.com/3300093/taiwan-gutter-oil-hong-kong-chang-guann-maxims-cakes-starbucks-7-eleven/
Kent, G. (2012, July 13). Food Quality: An Issue As Important As Safety . Retrieved February 10, 2015, from Food Safety News: http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2012/07/food-safety-not-just-an-issue-of-immediate-threats/#.VNo0i45q_IU
Tsang, E. (2014, October 30). Plan to tighten food safety regulations after 'gutter oil' scandal. Retrieved February 10, 2015, from South China Morning Post: International Edition: http://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/article/1627779/plan-tighten-food-safety-regulations-after-gutter-oil-scandal
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