The Shanghai Food Safety Commission said this week that it would enforce a ban on a range of seafood products by the middle of the year.
A spokesperson for the commission told FoodNavigator-Asia that the current local government laws ban many seafood products, but these prohibitions are not stringently enforced.
“We need a set of rules that would not overlap each other and which would be legally enforceable and actionable by food inspectors. We will list all the banned products on our website soon in a catalogue form,” he said.
According to the spokesperson, river shrimps, crab paste, certain varieties of unprocessed sashimi, and clam will be banned.
The spokesperson agreed that the clam or scatpharca subcrenata would be difficult to ban soon in the city as it is popular and even traded on the black market.
“But we have to ban it. We cannot take a risk like before. The dangers are too high and we will be inspecting for clam vigorously,” he said, adding that violations of the ban would result in a very heavy fine.
The move comes after a spate of food safety scandals in China, the most recent of which saw waste industrial gelatin being used in both food and pharmaceutical products being sold in the country.
Clam is believed to behind the Hepatitis A scare two decades ago.