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Dishonor roll: India and China are the world’s worst food safety violators


By Jenni Spinner+


India ranks first in a list by Food Sentry of the countries in the world with the most food safety violations.
India ranks first in a list by Food Sentry of the countries in the world with the most food safety violations.

A rundown of the number of food safety violators around the globe finds India and China are the countries with the highest number of offenses.

In an annual poll conducted by food safety data crunching outfit Food Sentry, the nations of the world are ranked in order of the number of food safety violations.

The recently released top 10 worst offenders list names the leaders (or losers) as follows: India, China, Mexico, France, the US, Vietnam, Brazil, Dominican Republic, Turkey, and Spain.

Understanding food safety

According to Food Sentry’s senior intelligence analyst Zak Solomon, breaking down such data is vital for food professionals to be aware of and comprehend.

Clearly understanding food safety from a global perspective is immensely important,” he said. “Food safety violations are nothing new; they've just been receiving a lot of attention lately, and rightly so.”

According to Food Sentry, the company scoured food industry data from 12 months’ worth of reports. Their staff dug into data from government entities in the US, Europe, and Japan, and other sources.

Top offenders

While developing countries have their share of food safety violations, Solomon pointed out the top 10 worst offending countries includes mostly first-world leaders.

"We import from every single one of the countries in the top ten, and, in fact, the U.S. is among the most common violators,” he said.

The poll reports the most frequently listed food safety violation was “excessive or illegal pesticide contamination.” Such infractions reportedly comprised more than a third of all the violations recorded.

Food Sentry is an organization designed to provide food professionals and consumers with information about food product safety.

4 comments (Comments are now closed)

Availability of information

It would seem that in many less developed countries the information gathering and documentation processes are less likely to record accurately the number of violations. More information in the article regarding the sources and accuracy of information collected would be appropriate.

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Posted by thom
08 August 2014 | 15h452014-08-08T15:45:46Z

Number of violations vs percentages

I'm trying to understand Dans point and argument that this is a useless list. According to his logic, a small country that ships a single product and is found in violation for that single violation therefore has 100% of its products in violation. He is suggesting that this is more important than a country that exports 1000 products and which has 600 of those products (60%) are in violation. Really? Does it occur to you that we receive more from the countries that export more and therefore statistically are more likely to run into products from those countries versus others? I'd call that information pretty useful.

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Posted by Regina
07 August 2014 | 08h102014-08-07T08:10:06Z

Top ten violators

This listing only takes into account the number of violations and does not consider any percentages. The US, India and China have immensely more opportunities for violations. Naturally they have more violations than small countries.
If you only have 100 opportunities and fail in 50 of them, you would still appear safer on this list than a country with 100,000 opportunities that failed 51 times.
This list is therefore useless.

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Posted by Dan
06 August 2014 | 16h292014-08-06T16:29:14Z

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