Wal-Mart re­calls tainted don­key meat

China Daily (Canada) - - CHINA - By WANG ZHUOQIONG wangzhuo­qiong@ chi­nadaily.com.cn

Wal- Mart, the world’s largest re­tailer by sales, has re­called don­key meat sold at some of its out­lets in Ji­nan, Shan­dong prov­ince, af­ter DNA tests showed the prod­uct con­tained meat from other an­i­mals.

The per­son in charge of the sup­plier fac­tory, Shan­dong Dezhou Fu­jude Food Ltd Co, has been de­tained, and the com­pany has sus­pended its pro­duc­tion.

Wal-Mart will re­im­burse cus­tomers who bought the tainted “Five Spice” don­key meat, ac­cord­ing to a state­ment from Wal-Mart.

The Shan­dong Food and Drug Ad­min­is­tra­tion said the prod­uct con­tained fox meat.

The re­tailer said it had set up an in­ves­ti­ga­tion team headed by its China pres­i­dent and CEO, Greg Fo­ran.

“We are deeply sorry for this whole af­fair,” said Fo­ran. “It is a les­son for us that we need to con­tinue to in­crease in­vest­ment in sup­plier man­age­ment.”

Wal- Mart said it will strengthen in­vest­ment to en­hance food safety by adding DNA test­ing of meat prod­ucts, which are not re­quired by the na­tion’s stan­dards.

But Her­mann Ng, CEO of Re­tail Na­tion, a re­tail con­sul­tancy in Shang­hai, said it is chal­leng­ing and un­re­al­is­tic for re­tail­ers to an­a­lyze fresh prod­ucts by test­ing the DNA of meat prod­ucts. He said Wal­Mart has re­duced its meat sup­pli­ers from more than 300 to about 120 in an ef­fort to con­trol the qual­ity.

China Mar­ket Re­search Group es­ti­mates Wal-Mart’s mar­ket share fell from 7.5 per­cent to 5.2 per­cent over the last three years.

Wal-Mart said in 2013 it would open 110 new stores in the next three years in China and in­vest 100 mil­lion yuan ($16.5 mil­lion) in the same time pe­riod to im­prove its food safety man­age­ment.

In 2011, a Wal-Mart store in Chongqing was fined for sell­ing duck meat past its ex­pi­ra­tion date. Reuters and Hou Liqiang con­trib­uted to this story.

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