Safety of school food must be assured
the Shanghai Municipal Food and Drug Administration confirmed in a statement that a private school in Zhangjiang Hi-Tech Park served their pupils expired food, including rotten and moldy products. Beijing News comments:
The tomatoes were rotten. The pork was labeled with a production date that had not yet arrived.
That’s what parents of children attending SMIC Private School found in its canteen. In a conversation with the angry parents, the headmaster said: “I have promised to supervise. What else do you want?”
Now the headmaster of the school, Zhu Ronglin, has been dismissed from his position, together with two other members of staff, and the Shanghai Municipal Food and Drug Administration has promised to investigate and punish anyone who has broken the law.
According to reports, the school outsourced its catering. If that company is found to have put pupil’s health at risk by using rotten and expired food, it should receive its deserved penalty, and its business license should be revoked.
Besides the enterprise, some other parties involved in the Shanghai food safety scandal may also be accountable.
The local food safety department could also have done a better job. If it supervised the canteens of primary and secondary schools strictly, the scandal might have been avoided. Let this be a lesson to them, and in future they invest more time and energy to prevent such things from happening, instead of just punishing those responsible after the event.
However, even though the school outsourced its catering it is in charge of its canteen and it is primarily responsible for ensuring the food is fit to eat. When the parents send pupils to the school, they have entrusted the safety of the children to the latter, and the school is responsible of supervising their safety, including food safety.