People who provide tip-offs leading to the discovery of companies using recycled cooking oil in their products could be rewarded up to NT$25 million (US$833,806) in Taipei, Taipei City Government spokesman Chang Chi-chiang (張其強) said.
To encourage the public to give tips, the city government plans to give those providing information between 10 percent and 50 percent of the fines issued to companies involved in the latest food safety scare as awards — amounts which are expected to reach as much as NT$25 million, according to Chang.
Kaohsiung-based Chang Guann Co (強冠企業) has supplied 51,981 18-liter cans of its Chuan Tung cooking oil made with recycled kitchen waste to at least 235 domestic food companies and restaurants, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said.
Photo: Chang Chung-yi, Taipei Times
According to Chang, five companies in Taipei have used the brand of problematic lard-based oil, adding that one of the firms, the biggest buyer in the country, bought 4,611 cans of the oil.
Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌) ordered at an interagency meeting on Thursday that all products connected to the use of the bad oil must be taken off store shelves in line with a directive issued by the central government, Chang said.
Suppliers of school lunches at 16 elementary and secondary schools in Taipei have used the cooking oil from Chang Guann, according to data shown at the city’s online Food Tracer Taipei platform.
The city has instructed those schools to suspend the use of oil from that producer, Chang said.
Last year, the city put the platform online to allow students and their guardians to check on the Internet the content, sources and nutritional information of everything served in school meals.
In an effort to build public confidence in the safety of food offered by schools and food stands at night markets in Taipei, the city government will continue to strengthen the implementation of the system, Chang said.
Taipei residents can call the city’s hotline, 1999, if they have any questions about the latest food safety incident, Chang added.
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