《经济学人》:台湾爆发食品丑闻  塑化剂事件
日期:2011-06-22 11:20

(单词翻译:单击)

Food scandals in Taiwan
台湾爆发食品丑闻

Plastic unfantastic
塑化剂事件

Tainted products also poison the president’s chances of re-election
食品受到污染给总统争取连任的前景蒙上阴影

Jun 16th 2011 | TAIPEI | from the print edition

TAIWAN’S biggest-ever food scare began when government inspectors testing sports drinks and soft drinks last month detected dangerous levels of industrial plasticisers. These are normally used to make everything from shoes to hosepipes more flexible. Since then, the plasticisers have been found in a range of foods and drinks. The crisis has also gone firmly international as China, Hong Kong, South Korea and the Philippines have withdrawn Taiwanese products from supermarket shelves. Taiwanese commentators are wondering how the government can live the scandal down.

上个月,台湾政府负责食品检验的工作人员在一些运动饮料及软饮料中检测出了含量足以对人体产生危害的工业塑化剂成分,由此引发了台湾最大的一次食品恐慌。通常情况下,塑化剂被广泛应用于鞋类、塑料软管等产品中,可起到增加柔韧度的作用。事件发生后,又相继在一系列食品和饮料中发现了塑化剂的身影。随着中国,香港,韩国和菲律宾纷纷将台湾产品从自己的超市中下架,这次危机毫无疑问已经造成了国际性的影响。台湾的评论家们都在琢磨政府将如何从这桩丑闻中脱身。

Some 900 products have been pulled from nearly 40,000 Taiwanese shops. Hospitals have been flooded with worried parents seeking check-ups for their children. Diets have swiftly changed. Out have gone processed drinks and even ice cream.

约有900中商品已在台湾近40000家店铺中撤柜,医院里也挤满了忧心忡忡的来给孩子做检查的父母。人们的饮食习惯顷刻间发生了改变,含添加剂的饮料,甚至是冰激凌都已在市面上消失。

The problems have been traced to two upstream suppliers of food additives, Yu Shen Chemical and Pin Han Perfumery. Among other things, plasticisers were substituted for palm oil as clouding agents in drinks. One plasticiser, known as DEHP, is a possible carcinogen, and thought capable of wreaking havoc with children’s reproductive organs. The inspectors discovered levels far in excess of the daily allowed intake. Insiders have told investigators that products may have been doctored for decades.

引发这次塑化剂风波的源头被锁定在两家食品添加剂上游供货商身上:昱申化工和品汉香料。塑化剂用在饮料中可替代棕榈油起到混浊剂的作用。一种可能致癌的叫做DEHP的塑化剂,被认为会对儿童的生殖器官产生严重损害。食品安全检验人员在被检查的食品中发现了含量远超过每日允许摄入量的该种塑化剂。有内幕人士告诉调查人员,或许早在几十年前就存在向食品中掺入有害添加剂的行为。

Any hopes that the scare might end quickly were dashed when contamination fears spread to pharmaceuticals. Local pharmaceutical companies have recalled a dozen licensed drugs, and on June 11th GlaxoSmithKline, a multinational drug giant, was ordered to recall two antibiotics when traces of plasticiser were found—though, company and government insist, at way below maximum recommended levels.

关于产品受到污染的担心已经蔓延到了制药业,指望着民众的恐慌情绪能够很快消失的想法一下子就被打消了。台湾本土制药企业已召回了十多种正规药品,而在6月11日,跨国制药业巨头葛兰素史克被勒令召回其生产的两种检测出含有塑化剂成分的抗生素药物-尽管公司和政府均坚称其中的塑化剂含量并未超过规定的上限水平。

Taiwan’s president, Ma Ying-jeou, describes government raids on shops and suppliers as Taiwan’s biggest-ever effort in fighting food contamination. Executives from the offending companies have been arrested. Mr Ma himself, along with prime minister Wu Den-yih and other ministers, donned workmen’s helmets and fireproof jackets and ceremonially burned contaminated goods in Changhua county. Mr Ma described their operations as “mopping up the battlefield”. Government officials in eight other counties also staged incinerations. It is anyone’s guess whether this propaganda show, worthy of China’s Communists across the Taiwan Strait, instilled confidence.

台湾总统马英九将政府突击检查商店和供货商的行动形容为台湾在打击有害食品方面最不遗余力的一次,相关涉案的公司高管已被逮捕。马英九和行政院院长吴敦义及其他各部门首长头戴安全帽,身披消防外衣,参加了在彰化县举行的受污染食品焚毁仪式。马英九称他们这一举动是“清理战场”。在其他八个县,官员们也在当地的焚毁现场亮相。大家都在猜想,台湾政府这种丝毫不亚于海峡对面的共产党的宣传作秀手法是否会让民众重拾信心。

Taiwan’s once robust reputation as a reliable and safe exporter of food has been dented. Mr Ma’s own reputation for competence has also been damaged by his government’s slow and muddled response to the crisis. Mr Ma is seeking re-election early next year. At the least, argues Hsu Yung-ming at Taipei’s Soochow University, the scandals may affect Mr Ma’s choice of running mate. His favourite was assumed to have been Mr Wu. But with the prime minister now a possible lightning rod for dissatisfaction over the tainted products, Mr Ma may have to think again. Other potential candidates are hardly inspiring. But Mr Ma will be keen to distance himself from any more cabinet embarrassments.

台湾作为安全可靠的食品出口商曾经有着非常好的口碑,但现在它的声誉已经大打折扣。以能力出色被人称道的马英九也因为其领导的政府应对此次危机时行动迟缓、毫无章法而声望受损。马英九正在谋求在明年年初的选举中获得连任的资格。台北东吴大学的徐永明认为,食品丑闻至少会影响马英九对竞选搭档的选择。本来他最中意的人选被认为是吴敦义,但这位行政院院长目前极有可能成为不满食品污染事件的公众的出气筒,所以马英九不得不重新考虑自己的选择,不过其他可能的人选又实在拿不出手。无论怎样,马英九将竭力让自己远离任何可能出现的牵涉到内阁的丑闻。

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重点单词
  • reputationn. 声誉,好名声
  • competencen. 能力,管辖权,技能
  • plasticadj. 塑料的,可塑的,造型的,整形的,易受影响的 n
  • contaminationn. 污染,污染物
  • affectvt. 影响,作用,感动
  • straitn. 海峡,困境 adj. 困难的,窘迫的 adj. 狭
  • reliableadj. 可靠的,可信的
  • responsen. 回答,响应,反应,答复 n. [宗]答复语,
  • poisonn. 毒药,败坏道德之事,毒害 vt. 毒害,摧毁,中毒
  • flexibleadj. 灵活的,易弯曲的,柔韧的,可变通的