At the beginning of last week, the news appeared on different sites that the market for imported soft cheeses in China is now closed. This was confirmed on the CNN website on Friday, September 8.
The companies that imported cheeses from Europe confirmed that such types of soft cheeses as Roquefort, camembert, and brie are now banned in China.
William Fingleton, the representative of the delegation of the European Union in China, notes that there is no valid reason for this ban since these cheeses were imported into the country for decades and people had no problems consuming them.
Such measures were taken because of the bacteria found in the rind of brie, camembert, and Roquefort. However, what exactly this bacteria doest is not stated.
The possible ban on the import of soft European cheeses to China became known back in June this year when a spokesman for Shanghai Fuzhen Commerce received a notice.
“The European cheese-making industry is extremely concerned about this ban,” Fingleton said. “We fear that potentially many other types of cheeses can also be banned.”
It is not the first time that China has banned the import of European cheeses. In 2014, the country temporarily banned the British cheese after food inspectors established that hygiene standards on a dairy farm in the UK are inadequate. Also in 2008, Mozzarella was banned after Italy withdrew the product because it contained dioxin, which causes cancer.
At the moment, it is still possible to import any hard cheeses to China, as well as mozzarella, which somehow did not fall under the current ban.