China, December 21, 2012
Update: Excessive amounts of antibiotics were found in eight batches of raw chicken samples taken from KFC supplier Shandong Liuhe Group from 2010 to 2011, the Shanghai Food Safety Office said in a statement on Thursday.
In 2005, the Shanghai Institute for Food and Drug Control signed a contract with the China division of Yum Brands in Shanghai, which owns KFC, to provide third-party testing services for its raw materials and semi-finished products, the statement said.
From 2010 to 2011, a total of 19 batches of raw chicken samples from the Liuhe Group were tested, and eight of them were found to contain excessive amounts of antibiotics. All the testing reports were sent to Yum Brands.
In an e-mail reply to China Daily, KFC said it strictly implements the country's regulations regarding raw material purchases, and has evaluated the qualification of suppliers, and sent samples to qualified third-party bodies for testing.
KFC's e-mail added that in 2010, excessive amounts of antibiotics were found in raw chicken supplied by the Liuhe Group and Yingtai Co, and that KFC sent back the raw chicken to the suppliers and required them to rectify the situation.
In 2011, KFC withdrew the qualification of Liuhe's Linyi factory to supply raw chicken. In 2012, considering the safety risk, KFC also terminated the supply contract with the Liuhe Group, it said.
KFC supplier chicken farms under investigation
The government of Shandong province is investigating chicken farms following accusations of illegal use of antibiotics and hormones there, the province's food safety office said.
The action came after China Central Television reported on Tuesday that several Shandong chicken farms feed chicken antibiotics and hormones every day to reduce their death rate and shorten their growing period.
The report also said some chickens were fed antibiotics two days before slaughter. Regulations stipulate that chickens must not be given antibiotics in the week before slaughter so that it will not remain in their systems.
Two such farms in Gaomi and Pingdu sold their chickens to a slaughterhouse in Pingdu, which belongs to Liuhe Group, the company that provided chicken to the China division of Yum Brands in Shanghai, which owns the KFC fast-food chain. The logistics centre of Yum then delivered the chicken to its fast-food stores, including KFCs, the report said.
Click on the thumbnails to see photos of the news report, as well as other incidents involving fast food outlets in China and Japan.