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Meat quality improves after China's crackdown on illegal additive: ministry

(Xinhua)

08:49, September 22, 2011

BEIJING, Sept. 21 (Xinhua) -- The Ministry of Agriculture (MOA) said Wednesday that more of the country's meat products are free of clenbuterol, an illegal fat-burning drug that is sometimes used as an additive in pig feed, thanks to the country's four-month crackdown on the usage of the additive.

According to the MOA, 99.3 percent of the country's animal products passed the ministry's second-quarter tests of clenbuterol content, the best level recorded since 2001.

Over 980 suspects were arrested in a national crackdown on the manufacture and sale of clenbuterol, which is banned as a food additive because of its toxic attributes, the MOA said. The campaign was launched in April after the Shuanghui Group, China's largest meat processing company, was found to be purchasing pigs that had been fed with adulterated pig feed.

During the campaign, 2.5 metric tons of clenbuterol and 5.9 metric tons of meat containing clenbuterol were confiscated, according to the MOA.

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