Mini-cups to have warnings
The government has ordered makers of mini-cup jelly candies to put warning labels on their products after a Taiwanese girl choked to death on the snack in China earlier this year, officials said yesterday. All jelly candies with a diameter of less than 3.1cm, the so-called mini-cup jelly, are required to carry labels warning of a choking hazard from next year, the Department of Health said. Manufacturers should also warn parents not to feed mini-cup jelly to children under five years old, the department said. Violators could faces fines of up to NT$1.5 million (US$47,000) while their products will be recalled or destroyed, it said. The department ordered the recall of all mini-cup jelly candies in March after a Taiwanese businessman living in Shanghai complained to Taipei authorities that his 19-month-old daughter choked after eating the snack. Accidents involving children choking on mini-cup jellies have also been reported in the US and South Korea.
Wang tenders resignation
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Vice Chairman Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) yesterday tendered his resignation to KMT Chairman Lien Chan (連戰). Wang told reporters that a precedent had been set with the resignation of a vice chairman following the election of a new chairman. KMT chairman-elect Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) yesterday said he hoped to reappoint Wang as a party vice chairman. Wang and his family will leave for the US today on a private visit.
Working-holiday spots open
The Ministry of Education said there are still spaces available for young people who are interested in obtaining a working-holiday visa for either New Zealand or Australia. Taiwanese have been eligible for both countries' working-holiday visas since last year. The visas allow young people to stay in the country for 12 months and work for up to three months to supplement their travel funds. Applicants must be aged between 18 and 30, have a return ticket and a bank statement proving they have at least NT$100,000 in funds, ministry officials said. There are 600 openings for Taiwanese this year under New Zealand's program and there have been more than 300 applications so far. Officials said 230 people have applied for a working-holiday visa for Australia since last November. People interested in the programs can contact the New Zealand Commerce and Industry Office at (02) 2757-6411 or the Australian Commerce and Industry Office at (02)8725-4250.
Chinese food fair nears
The 2005 Taipei Chinese Food Festival will open next Thursday at the exhibition hall of the Taipei World Trade Center, offering opportunities for visitors to taste a wide range of gourmet dishes from different countries. The annual festival, one of the most important events for the nation's catering sector since its inception 16 years ago, is expected to draw a crowd of some 160,000 during the four-day exhibition, according to its sponsor, the Taiwan Visitors Association. This year's event will feature demonstrations of culinary skills, lessons by famous cooks and a "street of gourmet food stores." Master chefs and their assistants from the US, Japan, China, Hong Kong, Malaysia and Taiwan will compete for the title of "culinary god." The exhibition hall will have 10 theme areas, such as vanilla and health and Taiwan rice. Tickets are NT$250 per person.
DOING ENOUGH? The HPA budgets NT$1.3 billion to prevent the health hazards of tobacco, but has no separate budget to fight teen drinking, a doctor said The government should step up alcohol education and prevention efforts, and allocate more of the budget to it, doctors said on Friday, citing the high consumption of alcohol among Taiwanese adolescents. One out of four 12-to-17-year-olds has consumed alcohol, said Yen Tsung-hai (顏宗海), director of Linkou Chang Gung Memorial Hospital’s Department of Clinical Toxicology. The Health Promotion Administration (HPA) budgets NT$1.3 billion (US$43.9 million) annually to prevent the health hazards of tobacco, but it has not allocated a separate budget for preventing teenage drinking or excessive alcohol use, Yen said. “There is no so-called ‘safe drinking level’ for minors,” because any amount consumed
The Fancy Frontier manga and anime expo held in Taipei over the weekend has sparked controversy, after a participant allegedly contravened the Act on Offenses Against Sexual Morality (妨害風化罪) by publicly exposing her private parts during a photo shoot. The two-day event opened at the Expo Dome at the Taipei Expo Park on Saturday, attracting numerous comic and anime creators, cosplayers, photographers and fans. Allegedly, a female cosplayer who was not wearing any underwear lifted up her skirt and revealed her private parts at an outdoor photography area near the venue. Event organizers said yesterday that to prevent indecent exposure, they have since
YOUNGEST PATIENT: Cases of botulism have been only sporadically reported over the past few years, with two in 2015, six in 2016 and none in the past three years The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) yesterday reported the nation’s first case of infant botulism this year, a four-month-old boy in northern Taiwan, as well as five new cases of Japanese encephalitis confirmed last week. The boy was introduced to homemade solid food in the middle of last month, but began to experience constipation and loss of appetite on June 23, CDC Epidemic Intelligence Center Deputy Director Guo Hung-wei (郭宏偉) said, adding that he was taken to the hospital when he developed a fever and shortness of breath on June 25. In the hospital, the boy also experienced a rapid heartbeat, limb
The National Taiwan Museum’s Railway Department Park in Taipei is to open to the public today. The park in Datong District (大同) near the North Gate (北門, Beimen) is one of the museum’s four branches. During the Japanese colonial era, the site housed the railway department of the Office of the Governor-General of Taiwan’s Bureau of Transportation. After World War II, it served as the headquarters for the Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) for several decades. In 2007, it was listed as a national monument under the Cultural Heritage Preservation Act (文化資產保存法). At an opening ceremony yesterday, Minister of Transportation and Communications Lin Chia-lung