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Food and drug cheats to be put on a blacklist

SHANGHAI'S food and drug watchdog is establishing a blacklist system to ban manufacturers and sellers of disqualified medicine and food from the local market for five years or more, officials said over the weekend.

The move follows recent food scandals uncovered across China, including an inferior milk powder scandal in Anhui Province five years ago and last year's melamine-tainted milk scandal.

Violators found providing counterfeit documents in medicine and food license applications, as well as those cheating or bribing the authorities will be put on the blacklist, Shanghai Food and Drug Administration officials said.

Manufacturers and sellers will also be blacklisted for illegal activities during production and selling. This includes falsifying production, sales and inspection records, illegally changing production procedures or mixing additives into products.

If a company is blacklisted it will not be entitled to receive any medicine license and the people responsible cannot apply for or extend their pharmacist license. It will also be impossible for rule violators to register new companies within the period, officials said.

The blacklist means violators face harsher punishment than before. Previously, they simply had their service licenses revoked.

Officials said they have learned much from drug watchdogs overseas, especially the United States FDA.


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