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China beefs up law to fight food safety scandals

BEIJING — China's top court has issued guidelines calling for harsher punishment for making and selling unsafe food products in the latest response to tainted food scandals that have angered the public.

The Supreme People's Court said Friday that the guidelines will list as crimes specific acts such as the sale of food excessively laced with chemicals or made from animals that have died from disease or unknown causes.

Adulterating baby food so that it severely lacks nutrition is also punishable as a crime under the guidelines. Negligent government food inspectors are also targeted for criminal punishment.

Despite years of food scandals — from milk contaminated with an industrial chemical to the use of industrial dyes in eggs — China has been unable to clean up its food supply chain.
 

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