Mainland customs to increase nucleic acid testing on imported cold-chain products and packages from Taiwan
Published: Jun 15, 2022 12:35 PM
Ma Xiaoguang Photo: cnsphoto
Ma Xiaoguang Photo: cnsphoto

Chinese mainland customs will increase nucleic acid testing for traces of coronavirus on imported cold-chain products and packages from Taiwan, Ma Xiaoguang, spokesperson from the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council said on Wednesday.

The move comes after traces of the virus were recently detected on the outer packaging samples of chilled and frozen aquatic products imported from Taiwan to the mainland, leading to mainland customs suspending acceptance of product import declarations from related companies for one week starting from June 10.

Mainland customs will increase the nucleic acid detection of coronavirus on imported cold-chain products and packaging from Taiwan, strictly preventing the risk of importing epidemic, and effectively protecting public health and safety, Ma said.

Ma also said food safety is of key concern to the public, and the mainland has always attached great importance to it, adding that the decision of  mainland customs to suspend the export of Taiwan grouper fish to the mainland from June 13 is “a normal security precaution, scientific and reasonable, and completely legitimate.”

Recently,  mainland customs has detected multiple instances of the prohibited drug crystal violet in grouper imported from Taiwan, showing that there are serious problems in the safety management system of grouper aquaculture in Taiwan, Ma added.

Malachite green and crystal violet are prohibited drugs on both sides of the Taiwan Straits. They can exist in fish and in the environment for a long time, and are mutagenic, teratogenic and carcinogenic to humans. Excessive oxytetracycline residue in fish can also cause damage to consumers' health.  

Mainland customs said on Friday it would suspend imports of groupers from the island of Taiwan starting from Monday, after detecting prohibited drugs including malachite green, crystal violet and oxytetracycline in imports on multiple occasions since 2021.

Chinese mainland imported fish and fish products from the island of Taiwan were equal to 284.77 million yuan ($42.5 million) during the first four months of 2022, official data showed. Total imports of fish and fish products during the period amounted to 33.09 billion yuan, meaning imports from Taiwan only accounted for 0.8 percent of the total.

Global Times