The Chinese General Administration of Quality Supervision—which, given the extraordinarily low quality of supervision of food/drinks/everything in the country, one could be forgiven for never having heard of—has refused more than half a million metric tons of genetically modified U.S. corn since November, citing food safety concerns.
Bloomberg News broke the story, and the (remaining) reporters over there have apparently had a hell of a time figuring out the logic behind the decision, as they report:
At least nine Panamax-sized vessels, each carrying about 60,000 tons of insect-resistant MIR 162 grain, have been refused, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is confidential. […]
The General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine in Beijing didn’t return a faxed request for an interview. Two calls to the mobile phone of COFCO’s spokesman, Yin Jianhao, weren’t answered.
China’s Ministry of Agriculture on Dec. 6 said it rejected the grain because its safety is under review. The quarantine agency, which reported about 180,000 tons as of Dec. 4, yesterday said more had been found, without giving a figure.
We ran a story earlier this month after China rejected a smaller quanitity of genetically modified corn crop, and ran one the month before about how Chinese genetically modified “super rice” has been running into some issues all its own. Heavy metal poisoning from rice is one thing, but apparently many draw the line at genetic modification.
[Image via Flickr]