A senior agriculture inspector has exhorted the government to jail people using harmful substances to artificially increase the weight of livestock, saying the fines in place now have failed to deter the practice.
Using illegal substances in animal farming is now imposed a fine of VND5-20 million (US$223-900).
But Pham Tien Dung, chief inspector at the agriculture ministry, pointed out that the penalty is meager compared to the VND100-300 million in extra profits a farmer would make.
“This murderous act needs to be deterred with criminal prosecution.”
Amendments to the Penal Code to take effect this July will consider stiffening the punishment to VND50-200 million fines or one to five years in jail.
Raids between January 8 and 17 at the HCM City slaughterhouses found high amounts of salbutamol, a steroid to increase lean meat and produce super-heavy pigs, in 864 pigs — 30% of all animals checked. The pigs were supplied from farms in nearby provinces.