Health minister criticized for flip-flopping on U.S. pork issue


TAIPEI (The China Post) — Health and Welfare Minister Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) downplayed on Tuesday an administrative procedure exempting labeling for bulk packaged food products, stressing that authorities will work toward labeling all products containing pork fat in the future.

The minister was responding to the last-minute announcement made by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA, 食品藥物管理署) a day earlier that drew a backlash online.

The aforesaid post, which was published at 11 p.m. on Monday, contradicted the minister’s statements on Sep. 4, promising that all U.S. pork products would be clearly labeled in the future.  

To appease the public, Chen announced at an event on Tuesday that the post was merely a demonstrative structure of how they wish to proceed, as opposed to concrete plans and regulations. 

However, Chen added, time is needed to communicate with the public and ensure that all product manufacturers properly label their merchandise.