Food labeling scam uncovered (Taiwan News)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) Prosecutors in Kaohsiung uncovered a scam which involved the replacement of old sell-by labels with new ones on imported Italian food products, reports said Wednesday.

At least nine executives and employees of two different companies were being questioned, reports said.

One company was named by the media as Ken Phone Trading Co., Ltd., which listed itself as based in Bali, New Taipei City, and as the importer of Newman’s Own products, Tabasco hot sauce and The Laughing Cow cheese. The other company under investigation was reportedly Tung Hai Food Co. in Kaohsiung City.

Ken Phone’s Kaohsiung plant regularly bought food products already past their sell-by date and replaced the old labels with new fake ones, investigators said. Five staff members at the Kaohsiung site were taken in for questioning and could face charges of forgery and violating food safety laws.

At Tung Hai, a family business, father Wang Juei-shan, 92, son Wang Yao-jung, 60, his wife Hung Chin-ying and their son, Wang Chien-lin, 35, were interrogated. A court reportedly approved the detention of the two younger Wangs.

The local media published the picture of a package of fettuccine noodles imported from Italy containing bugs to show the product had clearly passed its sell-by date.