Watchdog Vows to Ensure Soy Sauce Quality

China's commodity quality control watchdog vowed to take stricter actions to force all soy sauce and vinegar producers to publish their manufacturing techniques on their packaging, according to today's China Daily.

As from last week, the State Bureau of Quality and Technical Supervision stipulated that these manufacturers should clearly tell consumers how their products are made, especially what flavoring technique is used.

All soy sauce packaging that does not provide such relevant information in a well-marked form is now regarded as unqualified and, therefore, prohibited to be sold in China.

According to the bureau, these national standards concerning the flavoring of products are the first of their kind in China, aimed at protecting the consumers' interest and standardizing the flavoring industry.

There are two different flavoring techniques for soy sauce: brewing, usually more dense; and compounding, said to have the better taste. The new quality standards allow both kinds to be sold in the market.

However, experts state that compound soy sauce contains a type of carcinogenic substance harmful to consumers' health in some cases where quality control is not met.

Therefore, the new national quality standards of soy sauce was made to ensure the quality of this kind of daily product.

An official at the Beijing Municipal Bureau of Quality and Technical Supervision admitted there are still some soy sauce products sold in the market which do not state whether they are "compound" or "brew" products.

The official said the situation in Beijing was better than many other cities across the country.

The Beijing Municipal Administration for Industry and Commerce recently launched a crackdown on inferior products in Beijing, with an emphasis on the unqualified soy sauce, in accordance with the promotion of the newly-released standards.

As most well-known supermarkets in Beijing were busy removing unqualified soy sauce from the shelves, quite a few managers of small stores still felt unsure about the new standards.

People's Daily Online ---