The endless monsoon of food scandals seems to have finally caught someone’s attention. The city now has an online food safety map that allows people to see if local food producers are licensed or not. Shanghai Daily reports:
The map at http://t.cn/zWujfsQ lists a total of 1,833 food producers in the city that have acquired production licenses. People can find their addresses, the locations of their factories, their products, license numbers and when the licenses will expire.
There is also a search banner on the map, allowing people to search whether a producer has registered or not by typing its name.
Only a Chinese version is available at present.
The Shanghai Quality and Technical Supervision Bureau said yesterday the map will be updated from time to time and its search function will also be improved in the future.
Now all we need is a “destroy” function. All kidding aside, some residents do feel as if the map is just a device to put the public mind at ease, and won’t lead to any real crackdown on unlicensed producers.
And if this is anything like the pollution issue, there may be a couple unlicensed producers that manage to slip under the map’s radar every now and again. The map may raise awareness, but until unlicensed producers are actually punished consumer confidence will remain at an all-time low. According to a survey of eight major Chinese cities, including Shanghai, 73% of people feel unsafe to very unsafe about food, so in the meantime we can expect people to continue buying more and more foreign foodstuffs.