China media: Fast food quality

KFC says it has stopped using supplies from a firm suspected of selling expired meat Image copyright Reuters
Image caption KFC says it has stopped using supplies from a firm suspected of selling expired meat

Chinese media criticise foreign fast food chains for "compromising quality" after authorities suspend operations at a Shanghai firm that supplied meat to international brands.

Chinese branches of fast food chains, including McDonald's and KFC, have stopped using meat from a supplier in Shanghai following allegations it sold them out-of-date meat.

According to reports, authorities in Shanghai have ordered the suspension of operations at Shanghai Husi Food Co, the Chinese unit of US-based food supplier OSI Group.

Describing the incident as a "backslide of well-known foreign brands in China", the Global Times says that these brands "should take responsibility for supervising their supplier".

"Famous international brands have not adopted a dedicated attitude towards Chinese consumers. Perhaps they believed the Chinese market is a rough place, and that service that is 'just good enough' can work in China," it says.

Echoing similar sentiments, the Securities Times notes that the "cost of breaching food safety is low in China".

"Even if these actions are uncovered, the fine food companies face is much lower than the profit they earn. This encourages the risky attitude of the foreign enterprises…If China imposes heavy penalty, will these foreign companies still have the guts to breach the law?" it asks.

The China Daily, however, raises questions over the food regulator's competency.

"Why it was the media, not the watchdogs, that first brought to light the company's actions?" it asks.

"Regulators, given the importance of their work, should also be put under proper scrutiny. If any evidence shows that they have failed in their duties, they should also be punished in accordance with the law," it suggests.

'Bizarre' donations

Elsewhere, media criticise the US for "exaggerating" reports about a Chinese surveillance ship monitoring a naval drill.

China says it has the right to send the ship to monitor a US-led naval exercise, after US media reported the vessel's presence off Hawaii over the weekend.

China is also taking part in the drill along with 22 countries.

The defence ministry said that the navy ship had the right under international law to operate in "waters outside of other countries' territorial waters".

Zhang Junshe, a researcher with China Naval Research Institute, tells the Beijing News that the US media's "exaggeration of the issue" reflects the "Cold War mentality of a few people in America who are against the warming up of Beijing-Washington military ties".

According to military expert Song Zhongping, the activities conducted by the ship were "purely scientific".

"The ship's task is to understand the marine environment and geographical information in the Pacific Ocean…The activities are conducted in the public sea, so China has not violate the international law," says the pundit.

And finally, China's Red Cross Society has come under social media criticism for providing "bizarre" donations to typhoon-hit southern China.

According to reports, the aid agency immediately donated several thousand of quilts and jackets after Typhoon Rammasun hit Hainan province.

The donations, however, were described as "bizarre" by some netizens as the region is suffering from a summer heat wave, reports say.

Responding to the criticisms, the Red Cross Society of China says it will continue to give out quilts to the victims as these items are still a necessity during disasters.

Defending the aid agency, the People's Daily notes that the victims still need the quilts due to the temperature difference between day and night.

"There are many things to be done in the disaster-hit areas, why are we only keeping watch on the Red Cross and quilts?" it asks.

Echoing similar sentiment, the Beijing Times urges netizens to stop the "war of words" and focus on helping the victims instead.   

BBC Monitoring reports and analyses news from TV, radio, web and print media around the world. For more reports from BBC Monitoring, click here. You can follow BBC Monitoring on Twitter and Facebook.

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