SHANGHAI: The maker of a popular Chinese sweet banned by the Philippines on Thursday rejected reports they contained potentially toxic formaldehyde.
The company behind White Rabbit Creamy Candy said independent tests it commissioned after reports of the ban first emerged showed zero formaldehyde content.
"Our products have passed tests with strict standards and they are completely qualified," Guan Sheng Yuan Group Co general manager Wen Mao told reporters.
"We are taken aback by the Philippine test results and regret that they have not replied to our request to have the test reports sent to us," he said, adding that China's own quality watchdog was still checking the sweets.
The Philippine government confirmed Wednesday it had banned the import of White Rabbit Candy and three other Chinese sweet brands after tests showed they contained formaldehyde.
Wen said his company reserved the right to sue the Philippine Bureau of Food and Drugs and a Philippine television station that aired news of the bans, which left ten container-loads of the sweets stranded.
Industrial oils, acid, cancer-causing chemicals and other dangerous ingredients have been found in thousands of food items in China such as baby milk powder, rice and flour.
China has acknowledged problems and vowed to take action, but has also announced a series of seizures of US imports on safety grounds in moves seen as retaliatory.
China last week executed the former head of its food and drug safety watchdog for corruption, in a decision widely interpreted as an attempt by the government to show it takes the problem seriously.
Chinese officials have repeatedly blamed foreign media for hyping up reports of dangerous goods coming out of the country's chaotic and corrupt food and drug industry. - AFP/yy