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Archive for Thursday, September 25, 2008

China’s elite get special food

September 25, 2008

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Chinese waiters and waitresses prepare a lunch for a high-level official event at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing in this Dec. 11, 2007, file photo. The nation's political elite has access to gourmet, all-organic delicacies while the rest of the populace face a food supply fraught with sometimes harmful items - cancer-causing fish, pesticide-laden vegetables and chemical-tainted milk products.

Chinese waiters and waitresses prepare a lunch for a high-level official event at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing in this Dec. 11, 2007, file photo. The nation's political elite has access to gourmet, all-organic delicacies while the rest of the populace face a food supply fraught with sometimes harmful items - cancer-causing fish, pesticide-laden vegetables and chemical-tainted milk products.

— While China grapples with its latest tainted food crisis, the political elite are served the choicest, safest delicacies. They get hormone-free beef from the grasslands of Inner Mongolia, organic tea from the foothills of Tibet and rice watered by melted mountain snow.

And it's all supplied by a special government outfit that provides all-organic goods from farms working under the strictest guidelines.

That secure food supply stands in stark contrast to the frustrations of ordinary citizens who have faced recurring food scandals - vegetables with harmful pesticide residue, fish tainted with a cancer-causing chemical, eggs colored with industrial dye, fake liquor causing blindness or death, holiday pastries with bacteria-laden filling.

Now that the country's most reputable dairies have been found selling baby formula and other milk products tainted with an industrial chemical that can cause kidney stones and kidney failure, many Chinese don't know what to buy. Tens of thousands of children have been sickened and four babies have died.

Knowing that their leaders do not face these problems has made some people angry.

"Food safety is a high priority for children and families of government officials, so are normal citizens less entitled to safe food?" asked Zhong Lixun, feeding her 7-month-old grandson baby formula after he got checked for kidney stones at Beijing Children's Hospital.

The State Council Central Government Offices Special Food Supply Center is specifically designed to avoid the problems troubling the general population.

"We all know that average production facilities use large quantities of chemical fertilizers and pesticides. Antibiotics and hormones are commonly used in raising livestock and poultry. Farmed aquatic products are contaminated by various kinds of water pollution," the center's director, Zhu Yonglan, said in a speech earlier this year.

"It goes without saying that these are harmful when consumed by humans," Zhu told executives at supplier Shandong Ke'er Biological Medical Technology Development Co., which posted it on its Web site.

Zhu's speech has been widely circulated by Chinese Internet users on blogs and forums in recent days, with many expressing outrage that top government officials have a separate - and safer - food supply than the public.

The special food center enforces strict standards on suppliers like Shandong Ke'er, which makes health supplements designed to boost immunity and energy. Foods must be organic, not genetically modified and meet international food standards, said a manager in the center's product department, who only gave her surname, Zhang.

The reason: its A-list clientele of government officials and retirees of vice minister rank or higher.

Set up in 2004, China's Special Food Supply Center is almost as secretive as its high-end clientele, whose precise number is unclear but includes hundreds of top political leaders, their families and retired cadres. Much of the information on its Web site was removed after media inquiries and interview requests this week.

Goods deemed to meet the highest standards are stamped with the label "Nation A," which stands for "top end, irreplaceable, the best," according to the Web site. Those products are for senior politicians or government offices and not released to the general consumer market, said a customer service agent surnamed Dong.

Comments

bearded_gnome 6 years, 2 months ago

worth noting, China is still a communist country. this is the ultimate example of what the latte lawrence liberals want to bring to America (Amerika). note Obama criticizes "greed" and crooked dealings, but two advisors made many tens of millions of dollars at Countrywide, and FM. one was head of his VP search team!speaking of that, obama supporters raise McCain's health. well: Obama smokes, both his parents died young. *you really want Jawbone Joe a "hearbeat away from the presidency?" jawbone joe: "stand up Chuck" p[said to a MO legislator using a wheelchair]; the presidency doesn't lend itself to on-the-job-training [said of Obama]; said his helicopter was forced down in afghanistan...but it was weather not insurgents! and who can forget jawbone joe's: "Barack Amerika!" the vision of the latte lawrence liberals is the vision of Barry H. Obama. we don't need one food supply for the elite, and one dangerous one for the common people/serfs!

xylitol 5 years, 10 months ago

While China grapples with its fashionable rotten nutrient crisis, the semipolitical selected are served the choicest, safest delicacies. They get hormone-free cows from the grasslands of Central Mongolia, fertilizer tea from the foothills of Xizang and rice patterned by liquid mount precipitation.And it's all supplied by a special authorities dress that provides all-organic artefact from farms excavation low the strictest guidelines.That sure nutrient supplying stands in stark opposition to the frustrations of workaday citizens who score featured recurring content scandals - vegetables with damaging pesticide residue, search rotten with a cancer-causing chemical, foodstuff negro with industrialized dye, phony liquor causing cecity or decease, spend pastries with bacteria-laden fill.

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