A new food safety law has recently been approved by the People’s Republic of China’s (PRC) National People’s Congress Standing Committee. The law creates a ‘high-level co-ordination and guidance body’ and seeks to overcome concerns that the current food safety system is disjointed and consists of too many agencies. The law, which will take effect on 1 June 2009, will reduce the number of government departments responsible for food safety, giving primary responsibility to the Ministry of Health. It will also establish safety and quality standards for products.  

Meanwhile, the EU’s Food and Veterinary Office (FVO) is to carry out at least nine audits in the PRC in 2009. The inspectors will examine a range of matters, including poultry animal health and poultry products, animal casings, red meat and meat products, fishery products, pet food, veterinary medicine residues, food contact materials, irradiation, GM food and feed and export controls, rabbit meat, and plant health export controls.