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Pig Farmers Ask For Ban On US Pork

by 5m Editor
31 July 2007, at 5:28pm

TAIWAN - Harmful additive? : A drug used to cause pigs to gain lean weight, known in Taiwan as 'lean meat essence,' has turned up in local shipments and those from the US

Pig farmers protest outside the Legislative Yuan yesterday demanding a ban on imported pork products. Authorities rejected two shipments of pork from the US this month when the banned food additive Ractopamine turned up in them.

Thousands of pig farmers staged a protest outside the legislature yesterday, calling on the government to impose a ban on imports of US pork, some of which has been found to contain traces of the veterinary drug ractopamine.

Less than two weeks after the feed additive, which is banned in Taiwan but not in the US, was discovered in two shipments of pork from the US, a sample of domestic pork was found to be tainted with the same substance on Sunday.

"We are here to tell the public that the qualification rate of domestic pork is more than 99.9 percent. Domestic pork is perfectly safe for consumers," said Pan Lien-chou (???), president of the pig farmers' association.

Pig farmers support the government's strict inspection of the usage of ractopamine in the domestic pig industry. In the meantime, the government has to ban imports of pork from countries where it is legal to use ractopamine, Pan said.

The concentration of ractopamine found in the domestic sample was 0.37 parts per billion (ppb) and that found in the two US pork shipments was 0.15ppb and 0.32ppb.

Source: TaipeiTimes

5m Editor