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Dairy groups demand compensation for controversial milk report
Central News Agency
2013-12-13 10:05 PM
Taipei, Dec. 13 (CNA) Two dairy associations filed a lawsuit Friday against Business Weekly, seeking NT$10 million (US$337,472) in compensation for the lost sales caused by the magazine's report that claimed several popular types of milk contained banned drugs. Fang Ching-chuan, secretary-general of the Dairy Association Taiwan, and Hung Chang-chin, president of the Dairy Farmer Association, filed the suit at the Taipei District Court. The two associations, said that while they suffered an estimated NT$200 million in lost sales, the main focus of the legal action was to regain consumer trust in milk sold around the country. Aside from the NT$10 million sought in compensation, which the groups said would be donated to charity if they win the case, the associations also want the magazine to place an advertisement in Taiwan's major newspapers apologizing for its report. Their third demand is that the weekly run an article of equal prominence and length to the original to clarify and balance out the report that caused so much damage. The dairy groups also plan to file a defamation complaint with the Shihlin District Prosecutors Office on Dec. 16 against Chen Liang-yu, the Ming Chuan University biotechnology professor who was commissioned by the weekly to test nine milk samples for contaminants. The Nov. 20 report said veterinary drugs, including antibiotics, as well as estrogen, tranquilizers or antidepressants, were found in 70 percent of the milk products tested by Chen, sparking a milk scare in the country. Business Weekly later issued a statement offering an apology for causing food safety concerns. After the report surfaced, the government conducted its own tests on the different types of milk examined by the magazine, and found all of the products to be safe and in compliance with national standards. (Tsai Pei-chi and Y.L. Kao)
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