Chinese companies are inflating how much olive oil is in their products

“My bottom line is that no one will die from eating this. I can live with my conscience.”

Another day, another oil scandal in China, as three cooking oil producers were accused by Chinese state media for misrepresenting the levels of pricey olive oil in their products.

In a television report on April 1, CCTV called out three companies from Fujian province for mislabeling the percentages of olive oil after an inspection by the region’s food safety department.

One cooking oil by Jinong Food Company was labeled as containing six percent olive oil, but was found to have only three percent. Another product by Tianshun Grains & Oils Company said it had six percent olive oil, but held only two percent.

For Xihai Grains, Oils, and Food Company, their cooking oil allegedly had five percent olive oil, but its retail price belied the fact. According to the report, similar products by other brands sold for about ¥70 to ¥80, while Xihai’s price was ¥32.

Additionally, all the producers tagged their products as “extra virgin oil” or contained “a taste of olive” in large characters, but printed in much smaller font that it was blended oil.

According to national laws, food companies must state the ingredients and the content levels in their products, and should not misled consumers through font size or color differences.

The producers, however, aren’t too fazed. “Olive oil is very expensive,” said Tianshun general manager Li Mingyu. “You can’t expect a lot with the price we are selling for.”

“My bottom line is that no one will die from eating this,” said Luo Dingfa, director of sales at Xihai. “I can live with my conscience.”

All three companies have been ordered to stop production and recall their oils since Sunday night.

Watch the video (in Chinese) here:

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