China food scandal as McDonald’s and KFC provider is shut

China has shut a factory of U.S. food provider OSI Group for selling out-of-date meat to restaurant giants including McDonald’s and KFC, authorities said Monday, in China’s latest food safety scandal. A Shanghai television channel, which reported the original allegations, said that workers at the plant mixed expired meat with the fresh product and deliberately misled quality inspectors from McDonald’s. City officials closed the Shanghai Husi Food Co. factory on Sunday and seized products that allegedly used the expired meat, the Shanghai Food and Drug Administration said in a statement. Police were investigating, it said, threatening “severe punishment” in future.

I don’t know that this is something an apology can fix so easily because, at this point, people don’t have a whole lot of trust that they have good systems in place.

Benjamin Cavender, Shanghai-based principal at China Market Research Group

Television footage showed workers in white suits picking up meat and hamburger patties from the floor before putting them back into processing machinery, and one employee handling out-of-date beef and calling it “stinky meat.” McDonald’s said in a statement it had “immediately” stopped using the factory’s products while restaurant operator Yum separately said its KFC and Pizza Hut establishments had also halted use of its meat. KFC has faced food safety issues in China before, when authorities found excessive levels of antibiotics in chicken it sourced from local suppliers in 2012.