Aquaculture for all

Misinformed about Chinese food imports

CHINA - In a letter, "Checking Chinese Exports," Richard Raymond claimed to "correct misinformation" in Harold Meyerson's report about food safety. However, the official food import records of the Commerce Department suggest it is Mr. Raymond who is spreading misinformation.

"Few of our food imports are inspected and many are intentionally mislabeled to avoid even theoretical regulation."

Harold Meyerson

Mr. Raymond, an undersecretary of agriculture for food safety, ignored what Mr. Meyerson actually wrote - that few of our food imports are inspected and many are intentionally mislabelled to avoid even theoretical regulation.

Mr. Raymond asserted, otherwise: "Currently, China does not export any meat, poultry or egg products to the United States."

But official US import data indicates that, even ignoring mislabeling, Mr. Raymond's claim is not true.

For the first three months of 2007, the records show US imports from China of $3,942,000 in meat, particularly frog meat but also rabbit, deer and poultry, including edible offal. The United States imported $481,000 of bird eggs in shells and another $20,000 of bird eggs not in shells. The records show imports from China of an additional $19,348,000 in non-fish animal parts, such as guts, bladders and stomachs. U.S. imports from China of seafood and fish are officially reported as $433,354,000 during the first three months of 2007.

Source: WashingtonPost

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