Whether it be counterfeit foods or the use of hazardous chemicals in the food manufacturing process, China has seen a number of incidents in recent years that question the safety of its food industry. At a time when trust in food safety is still a delicate issue comes yet another bizarre incident that will once again send chills down many readers’ spines. The incident tells the story of pet cats which were stolen and then turned into fake mutton by a man looking to make a quick buck. The poor cats were then sold as “wholesale meat” on the food market.
With the country growing at an unprecedented rate and many still living below the poverty line, it is inevitable that China should struggle to control the quality of the foodstuffs it manufactures. With a reputation for being cheap and of inferior quality, Chinese exports are often unfairly labelled as potentially harmful or unappetising, and many in neighboring countries will snub Chinese-produced consumables found on supermarket shelves purely because of where they come from. But when developed countries rely so much on cheap Chinese labor and exports, one sometimes has to wonder whether this is partly a problem of our own making.
Of course, Japan rarely sees eye-to-eye with China, so it is perhaps unsurprising that it should focus on the negative when it comes to news of this kind. This week in fact, website Madame Riri published an article outlining 10 cases of food products from China that have caused scandal in recent years. After reading their list, though, even we can’t help but feel a little concerned for the wellbeing of the world’s next superpower.