New food poisoning case hits China

By Dominique Patton

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Food poisoning Food safety Foodborne illness China

Almost 300 people were hospitalized in Shanghai last week, after
suspected food poisoning by pork containing a banned animal feed
additive, the state media Xinhua reported on Friday.

The consumers experienced dizziness, fatigue, racing pulse and muscular tremors, according to the report. Local food authorities have not yet released results from blood samples collected from the patients but the symptoms are typical of poisoning by clenbuterol, a chemical given to pigs to prevent fat build-up, said doctors. The patients, most of whom had been discharged from hospital by Friday afternoon, reported eating pork, pig liver and other pig organs. More than 100 of them had lunch at their work unit canteen before developing the symptoms. China's food safety record shows little sign of improving, despite the country's intention to improve quality and standards ahead of the Olympics. As well as fake products, and goods made using poor quality, or dangerous ingredients, the country also has a high incidence of food poisoning. In a recent case of food poisoning, 87 people in Beijing fell ill after eating half-cooked snails in a restaurant. They were later diagnosed with a type of angiostrongyliasis, a disease caused by parasites that affects the brain and spinal cord, and can lead to meningitis. An average of 300 million people in China contract foodborne diseases each year.

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