Rice mill inspected
Prosecutors and government officials yesterday conducted an inspection of a Miaoli County rice mill to check on its rice sources after the mill was linked to a scam that labeled imported rice as locally grown. Samples of rice from 10 packages were sent to health authorities for tests. The inspection was triggered by the discovery that Chyuan Shun Food Enterprise Co — one of the three largest rice mills and distributors in the nation — was found to be selling rice labeled as domestically grown, but which had been mixed with cheaper imported rice. The Agriculture and Food Agency yesterday fined the firm NT$200,000 — the maximum penalty possible — for the disparity. The agency also demanded a full recall of affected products. Chyuan Shun chairman Lee Tung-chao (李東朝) apologized in a statement for what he called a “labeling error.” He also promised to institute immediate corrections and stricter quality controls.
Tsai’s film picked for festival
Director Tsai Ming-liang’s (蔡明亮) latest film, Stray Dogs (郊遊), has been added to the lineup of 36 films on the main slate of the 51st New York Film Festival, which is to take place from Sept. 27 to Oct.13. It will be the first Taiwanese film to be screened at the festival since 2004, when Hou Hsiao-hsien’s (侯孝賢) Cafe Lumiere (咖啡時光) was shown. Stray Dogs is the 55-year-old Tsai’s third film, following What Time Is It There? (你那邊幾點) in 2001 and Goodbye, Dragon Inn (不散) in 2003. The organizer of the New York Film Festival praised Stray Dogs, a 138-minute feature about a homeless family living on the edges of modern society, as “bracingly pure in its anger and its compassion, and as visually powerful as it is emotionally overwhelming.”
Team tracks sea turtles
Two green sea turtles were released over the weekend after being fitted with satellite transmitters that will let a team of National Taiwan Ocean University researchers and marine workers keep tabs on their movements, the Liouciou Township (琉球) Office in Pingtung County said. The team is using transmitters provided by Hong Kong’s Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department and the US-based Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center. The coral reef around the township, a small island off the southwestern coast, has helped create a unique environment for the creatures. At least 100 sea turtles have made a home within 10m of the coastline, while even more turtles come use the area as a hatching ground, the researchers said.
MOE to honor Rhinos’ Hsu
The Ministry of Education (MOE) will posthumously honor EDA Rhinos manager Hsu Sheng-ming (徐生明), who died on Saturday last week aged 54, with a lifetime achievement award, Minister of Education Chiang Wei-ling (蔣偉寧) said on Monday. The ministry will also recommend that President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) issue a posthumous citation to Hsu, he said. Hsu died at home late on Saturday following his team’s game against the Brother Elephants in Taipei. He was a member of the national baseball team at every level, starting as a player before becoming a manager. He also held the record for number of wins by a manager in the nation’s professional baseball leagues with 715. He will be remembered for refusing to go along with a game-fixing scam, for which he was wounded in a knife attack. A funeral service will be held in Taipei on Sept. 9, when Taiwan celebrates Sports Day, the Rhinos said.
‘HONEYMOON’ IS OVER: A political science professor said that the Tsai administration’s popularity peaked after it successfully contained COVID-19, but is waning President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) and Premier Su Tseng-chang’s (蘇貞昌) approval ratings fell significantly this month in the wake of the government’s handling of the distribution of relief funds and stimulus coupons to people and businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, a poll released yesterday by the New Power Party (NPP) showed. The poll showed that 68 percent of respondents said they were satisfied with Tsai’s performance, down 8.9 percentage points from last month, while 21 percent said they disapproved of her performance. Her approval among respondents aged 20 to 29 fell 14.7 percentage points, the largest decrease when compared with other age
Peggy Chen (陳佩琪), wife of Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲), yesterday said that the Central Epidemic Command Center’s (CECC) claim that Taiwan had warned the WHO about possible human-to-human transmission of COVID-19 was “far-fetched.” The US on April 9 said that the WHO had put politics first and ignored Taiwan’s early warning in December last year, which the WHO denied the following day. The WHO said that it received an e-mail from Taiwanese authorities on Dec. 31 last year, but that “there was no mention in the message of human-to-human transmission.” Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the CECC,
Food delivery provider Foodpanda had 564 consumer disputes from January to last month and failed to attend many mediation sessions with local governments nationwide, the Executive Yuan’s Consumer Protection Committee said. In a news release earlier this month, the committee said that it investigated consumer complaints and mediations for Foodpanda and rival Uber Eats during the period, when the number of delivery orders jumped due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Uber Eats had 80 consumer disputes, the committee said. Of Foodpanda’s consumer disputes, 368 resulted from delivery drivers canceling orders after customers could not be reached, 108 were related to the quality or quantity
PROTECTION LACKING: DPP Legislator Lai Pin-yu said that currently, victims cannot legally force online platforms to remove sexual videos or imagery of them A bill to prevent the nonconsensual distribution of imagery or videos of sexual acts between adults on Friday passed a first reading and has been forwarded to a Legislative Yuan committee to be discussed. The bill was jointly proposed by 18 Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) legislators. It seeks to promote gender equality, uphold righteous and moral social conduct and to protect the privacy of individuals, all of which would help prevent incidents similar to South Korea’s “Nth Room” case, the proposal said. The Nth Room involves a criminal investigation into the distribution of sexually exploitative videos via the Telegram app from 2018 to