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Food hygiene controls to be toughened

FOOD industry workers will soon be required to obtain a certificate in food safety to qualify for employment.

The Shanghai Food and Drug Administration said it was seeking submissions on food safety training for workers in the industry and expected new rules to implemented as early as year-end.

It plans 12 different certificates covering areas such as production, sales, catering services, online food platforms and home delivery.

Workers will attend industry association training sessions first, followed by an exam on national and local food safety laws and standards, practical skills and how to respond to emergencies such as an outbreak of food poisoning, the administration said.

Workers can either attend exams or do the tests online. Those who fail can apply to re-sit the test. But if they fail again they must wait a year for a third try.

Managers of food production businesses and food safety management staff will be required to receive at least 60 hours of training a year under the new rules. Random checks will be conducted on workers.

Companies can be fined up to 50,000 yuan (US$7,700) or lose their license if staff don’t attend training or sit exams.

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