Hong Kong will suspend the import of four vegetables from mainland China due to food safety concerns, Ming Pao Daily reported.
Mainland suppliers told the Hong Kong Imported Vegetable Wholesale Merchants Association that spinach, mustard, green beans and white beans will not be allowed into Hong Kong due to “excessive pesticide residues”, Yuen Cheong, its chairman, was quoted as saying.
The move is to meet the strict standards imposed by Hong Kong authorities, which are “even higher than the criteria adopted in the European Union”, he said.
A vegetable supply social enterprise affiliated with the Tung Wah Group of Hospitals has informed its customers that the four vegetables are not allowed to be imported from the mainland, the report said.
The Hong Kong government raised the requirements for maximum pesticide residue on August 1. Therefore, the four vegetables are not allowed to be imported unless merchants pay some HK$12,000 for testing.
That has driven up vegetable prices sharply in recent days.
“No matter how these vegetables have been imported, the price may have doubled,” said an official of the Hong Kong Vegetable Union Limited.
However, the government has yet to say if they have been notified by the mainland authorities on the issue.
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