Main Industrial Development Issues and Challenges

Food safety

Chinese researchers have concluded that the country’s food safety management system has serious deficiencies in standards, monitoring, interagency cooperation, and overall safety results. China’s food safety system is managed by nine separate agencies and authorities, and lacks a consistent system of standards and monitoring. That, with a shortage of qualified laboratory staff, results in problems such as noncompliance with pesticide regulations. Use of poor quality and illegal pesticides, pesticides prohibited for fruits and vegetables, as well as misuse of pesticide result in 30 percent of vegetables having residues in excess of the norm and over 500,000 cases of pesticide poisoning a year. China exported US$ 246 billion of food in 2005, making it one of the largest food exporters in the world. However, the country struggles to meet international standards for export. Recent safety problems have drawn international attention and resulted in stricter regulations by importing countries as well as higher rejection rates of Chinese products.