French supermarket giant Carrefour has closed one of its stores in China after being accused of selling regular chicken under a ‘premium’ label for high prices.
The Chinese authorities of the Henan province asked the company to close its store in Zhengzhou after a television network reported the breaches during a World Consumer Rights Day special show on 15 March. The programme also revealed that Carrefour sold expired chicken, changing the date on the label.
Contacted by GlobalMeatNews, Carrefour China said the company accepted Zhengzhou’s industrial and commercial bureau’s decision to close the outlet temporarily to initiate a re-organisation. “A task force was quickly mobilised following the report, and an investigation has been opened to shed light on the poultry issue,” the spokesperson added.
According to local media reports, Carrefour apologised on the evening of the broadcast, and posted a message on popular micro-blogging website Sina Weibo, saying an emergency panel had been set up to investigate food-quality management at the Zhengzhou store, and that training would be enhanced to safeguard the interests of consumers.
In October 2011, 13 Walmart stores in the Chinese province of Chongqing were closed by the authorities, following reports that regular pork was being sold as organic. A few days after the scandal broke, Walmart China’s CEO resigned “for personal reasons”. He was replaced in February 2012 by former senior vice-president of Walmart International Greg Foran.
Carrefour recently opened its 204th Chinese supermarket in the city of Ziyang.