Taiwanese pork producers protested their country's legislative body this week, demanding a ban on imported pork products. This follows the country's rejection of two U.S. pork shipments after identifying ractopamine in the meat. Taiwan has a zero-tolerance policy against the U.S. Food-and-Drug-Administration approved product.
Taiwan officials report that pork sample from their own country revealed the product as well. The concentration of ractopamine found in the domestic sample was 0.37 parts per billion; the amounts found in the two US pork shipments was 0.15 ppb and 0.32 ppb, Taiwanese authorities said.
"We are here to tell the public that the qualification rate of domestic pork is more than 99.9 percent. Domestic pork is perfectly safe for consumers," said Pan Lien-chou, president of country's pork producer association.
Ractopamine is a beta-agonist, and is nicknamed "lean meat essence" in Taiwan.
But some Taiwan lawmakers believe the ban on ractopamine should be lifted. Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Wu Ming-ming, pointed to the United Nation's Food and Agriculture Organization and the World Health Organization's 2004 statement that ractopamine within the 10 ppb concentration point was permissible. Wu said the council should align with international standards because Taiwan's pig farmers could lose their international competitiveness.
Source: Taipei Times