Sun, Mar 17, 2013 - Page 3 News List

Taiwan News Quick Take

Staff writer, with agencies

WEATHER

Stable weather to continue

The current stable weather pattern is likely to continue into next week, the Central Weather Bureau said yesterday. Minimum temperatures could range from 15°C to 18°C in northern areas, while the nation’s southern areas could expect lows of between 18°C and 20°C, forecasters said. However, the bureau cautioned that some parts of the nation could see big fluctuations of up to 10°C a day. It said sunny skies can be expected across Taiwan for most of this week, with some clouds and occasional showers due to the influence of a seasonal front.

AGRICULTURE

Station to make supplement

Hualien District Agricultural Research and Extension Station yesterday said it will produce a dietary supplement, using its newly developed variety of bitter gourd that is said to have strong antioxidant properties. National Science Council researchers have found that the new bitter melon developed by the station is rich in vitamin C, folic acid and dietary fiber, which makes it perfect for use in a health product, they said. A local biotechnology company, which has gained approval to market the new variety of melon, plans to work with growers to increase output in order to meet demand in the mass production of the dietary supplement. The station said its next step is to work with academic institutions to develop a cancer cure from extracts of the melon.

HEALTH

FDA warns on bad equipment

The Department of Health’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warned consumers against buying unlicensed medical equipment online and emphasized that eye contact lenses, as plain as they may seem, are also a kind of medical equipment that are required to be regulated and licensed by the government. According to recent media reports, some retailers who have been penalized for selling medical devices on auction and shopping Web sites have since turned to Facebook and continued to sell online, an action the FDA restated is illegal. The Pharmaceutical Affairs Act (藥事法) stipulates that medical equipment can be manufactured or imported only after the manufacturer or the importer has obtained a government-issued license, said the administration. Consumers are advised to use the medical-device database on the FDA’s official Web site to check for information about equipment, including product names, names of manufacturers and license numbers. Those who are in violation of the Act are subject to a penalty of up to NT$150,000 (US$5,000), the FDA said.

WATER

Cloud seeding planned

Cloud seeding may be started tomorrow to induce rain at Shihmen Reservoir in northern Taiwan, after water reserves there have dropped below the lowest level, a water resources official said yesterday. The procedure will be immediately implemented upon the arrival of a possible cold front that day, Chien Chao-chun (簡昭群) of the Water Resources Agency said. Chien urged the public to conserve water as the reservoir, which supplies water to Taoyuan and Hsinchu counties as well as to parts of New Taipei City (新北市), has seen its water drop below its lowest level of 232m. Water rationing has been started in Taoyuan County and New Taipei City’s Linkou District (林口). Chien added the agency will call a meeting to discuss the possibility of further water rationing in northern Taiwan tomorrow.

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