The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) yesterday announced that it has raised the reward for whistle-blowers and others who tip off the government to food safety violators, a day before a district court was set to hand down a verdict in an edible oil case that has shaken confidence in locally-produced food products.
FDA Deputy Director-General Chiang Yu-mei (姜郁美) said that newly amended FDA regulations will allow anyone providing tips that lead to the discovery of violations to receive a 5 percent to 10 percent cut of the fine imposed on the offender. The previous regulations only offered 5 percent.
Meanwhile, the Changhua District Court is set to make its verdict in the case against Chang Chi Foodstuff Co, whose Tatung-branded oil, labeled 100 percent pure, was found to be adulterated with cotton seed oil and a banned coloring agent.
Chang Chi owner Kao Chen-li (高振利) and two employees were charged with fraud and violating the Act Governing Food Sanitation (食品衛生管理法) with the court also considering charges under the Criminal Code. Kao and the two employees confessed to the charges, but argued that they did not constitute criminal conduct.
Prosecutors are seeking a prison sentence of 20 years for Kao but leniency for the two employees on the grounds that they were only following instructions to hold onto their jobs.
FOSSIL CLUES: The bushfires resulted from a positive Indian Ocean dipole event, when the region east of the ocean becomes drier, professor Shen Chuan-chou said The bushfires that swept through Australia last year were connected to a phenomenon known as the Indian Ocean dipole (IOD), which is expected to become more frequent due to climate change, a geologist studying coral fossils said yesterday. National Taiwan University Department of Geosciences professor Shen Chuan-chou (沈川洲) since 2001 has been working with Australian and US researchers to study climate systems in the Indian Ocean. Led by Australian National University Research School of Earth Sciences professor Nerilie Abram, the team published a paper on IOD in the journal Nature on March 9. The bushfires resulted from a positive IOD event, when the
Senior judges yesterday met to discuss the constitutionality of a law that makes adultery a criminal offense, before being ordered by Judicial Yuan President Hsu Tzong-li (許宗力) to set a date for a constitutional interpretation within the next month. The judges met to discuss Article 239 of the Criminal Code on offenses against marriage and family, after 18 judges had called for a constitutional interpretation of the issue. Taipei District Court Judge Lin Meng-huang (林孟皇) said that while he had previously tried adultery cases and never questioned the law, his feelings changed when trying a case last year involving baseball star Wang
Instead of hating the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT), help change it, KMT Chairman Johnny Chiang (江啟臣) said, as he urged young people to join efforts to reform the party. As the nation marked Youth Day on Sunday, Chiang said in a Facebook post that he wanted to remind people that “the KMT used to be very young.” Now, when people think of the KMT, they equate it with older people, he wrote. “Even if [the KMT] is a 100-year-old party, it must maintain a young mentality, and understand what young people want and what they want the KMT to do,” Chiang wrote.
A survey has found that 37.3 percent of transgender people in the nation have experienced gender-related discrimination or bullying in the workplace, the Taiwan Alliance to Promote Civil Partnership Rights said yesterday. The alliance’s survey showed that 55.41 percent of transgender people said that they had been afraid to use a public restroom, 18.53 percent had been harassed or attacked in public, while 15.83 percent had been afraid to ask a police officer or other professional for help. The survey, conducted from March 14 to Wednesday last week, was based on 518 valid responses from transgender people aged 14 to 78, the