The pesticide-laced dumplings sent to Japan and caused 10 people to be seriously ill, could not have been contaminated in China, according to Chinese authorities. And while both Japan and China have acknowledged that the poisoning could have been deliberate, Chinese investigators now say it has found nothing unusual on its side. Meanwhile, the pesticide found in the dumplings is illegal in Japan.
It’s the latest chapter in an ongoing tainted-food saga between Japan and China. The case has touched off tensions between the two countries with each going back and forth on who could be at fault. Officials from both sides have taken the incident seriously and made it a point of discussion during high-level talks between the two countries.
Adding to the tensions are further reports that pesticides have been found in other food items sent to Japan, namely steamed meat buns, fried pork rolls and frozen mackerel. Chinese officials are also denying any wrongdoing for the those tainted food items.
The Associated Press reports:
Traces of methamidophos, an insecticide banned in Japan, were found in the dumplings, on the packaging and in the vomit of the people who were sickened in December and January after eating two separate brands of dumplings made at the Tianyang Food Processing Ltd. factory.
The incidents have aggravated often-tempestuous relations between the neighbors, who have clashed over wartime history and mineral-rich territories.
“We believe that there is little chance of putting methamidophos into dumplings in China,” Yu told reporters at a briefing. He noted that police believed the case was “caused by manmade factors” and did not stem from tainted raw materials.
Japan’s Health Ministry had no immediate comment.