10 Public Hearings in Three Days

By Hu Fan(胡凡)

The Taiwanese government held 10 public hearings from November 12th to 14th in the northern, central, southern and eastern part of Taiwan, to discuss the feasibility of lifting ban on Japanese produce from radiation-affected areas.

Food and Drug Administration.
Food and Drug Administration.Photo/By Hu Fan(胡凡)
The joint activities. Photo/By Hu Fan(胡凡)
The joint activities. Photo/By Hu Fan(胡凡)

Since March 25,2011 , food imports from the Japanese prefectures of Fukushima, Ibaraki, Tochigi, Gunma and Chiba have been banned. And for some food from other prefectures, radiation inspection certificates, which are issued by Japanese government or officially authorized research units, have been also required.

Lai Shyh-bao (賴士葆), an opposition Kuomintang legislator, said it is wrong for the government to determine whether or not to import these foods on the basis of the inspection reports from Japan. “ Some civic groups traveled to Japan to check radiation levels in the  foods and the environment, and the government should do the same, ” said Lai Shi-bao (賴士葆).

The joint activities.
The joint activities.Photo/By Hu Fan(胡凡)

Hung Chia-Chun (洪佳君), a Kuomintang new Taipei city councilor, said the reason why she and many people protested in the public hearings is that they don’t think it’s safe to import food from these five prefectures. And she accused the government of “trying to exchange diplomatic interests with the life and health of people.”

She deemed that Taiwanese government has no ability to ensure food safety in the absence of manpower and equipment. “ We only have one test equipment in the Kaohsiung port and dozens of detection staff. If the government can only check one in thirty containers, who can make sure that there is no problem with the rest of the imported food?” said Hung Chia-Chun (洪佳君) .    

Hung also stressed that she would continue to paying close attention to the incident and will hold joint activities to win public support.

Lin Guo-cheng (林國成), a People First Party Taipei city councilor, questioned the reason why the government want to import the food from radiation-affected areas. “ Taiwan also have these the same food and in which are safer, so we do not need to import food from Japan”, said Lin Guo-cheng (林國成).

The joint activities.
The joint activities.

He also mentioned the previous oil incident. He thought Taiwan doesn’t have comprehensive laws on food. “We don’t know how to judge these people by law. Moreover, the harm of radiation is more serious than the poisonous oil”, said Lin Guo-cheng (林國成).

Two public hearings on Japanese food imports will be held in Taipei and Kaohsiung in December. And the government will hold a television public hearing in December 25.