Shanghai is considering a new regulation that would blacklist and harshly punish businesses involved in illegal food safety conduct, according to Chinese media Xinhua.
The crackdown, which comes amidst a slew of food safety scandals in China, would cover 11 types of misconduct and company executives would be eligible to make the blacklist. The proposed policy, which may take effect in 2013, was announced by vice mayor Shen Xiaoming.
“Food companies that use banned drugs or other substances that might be harmful to people during the planting of farm produce or its processing and transportation would be blacklisted, according to a proposed regulation on food safety. Other banned activities include producing food using inedible substance or materials, illegally making, selling or using banned food additives and recycling food as a raw material,” Xinhua reported.
Shen told the media that once companies are blacklisted, those businesses would face strict market access and harsh punishment from multiple authorities. Enterprises that are blacklisted would no longer be able to operate food businesses in the city.
China continues to struggle with food safety scandals — from pesticide-laden beans to recycled gutter oil used in restaurants.
Most recently, media reports of excessive levels of antibiotics in chicken being served in Yum Brands stores, KFC and McDonald’s have irked consumers. Regulators in Shanghai said while some of the chicken they tested was below safe levels for antibiotics, they found suspiciously high levels of an antiviral.