Police raid Chinese supermarket displaying 6,000 items that expired in 2019

Police raid Chinese supermarket displaying 6,000 items that expired in 2019

The Guardia Civil has raided a Chinese Supermarket near the central market in Las Palmas (Gran Canaria), for having almost 6,000 items on display for sale that are a risk to human health if consumed as some expired in 2019 and others don’t have expiry dates on them and were rotten.

The supermarket, on Calle Barcelona, specialises in the sale of frozen seafood and meat, as well as Spanish/Chinese ‘dry’ products. Inside, the shelves are full of tins and packets and freezers filled to the brim, everything you’d expect to find in a supermarket.

However, health officials have discovered that 5,794 of these items on sale to the public had expired at least since 2019, and those that were not expired lacked expiration labels, posing a significant health risk to customers, even though the plastic packaging guaranteed, in Chinese letters, that it was "excellent nutritious food."

The Guardia Civil, as part of actions aimed at combating smuggling and fraud, inspected the supermarket at the end of April in an operation aimed at ensuring food safety in grocery stores. According to reviews online, mainly from the Asian community, the food "is super good." But none of that is true, according to the data collected by the agents.

"These products seriously endanger the health of anyone who bought them," say the Giardia Civil in a press release. During the raid, they seized rotten beef and poultry frozen foods which boasted of being a "nutritious product", and confiscated fish, vegetables, soybeans, dates, pasta, rice, preserves, smoothies, milk, oils, and snacks which had all expired five years ago. None had the correct Spanish labelling or certification.

Police raid Chinese supermarket displaying 6,000 items that expired in 2019

Faced with the seriousness of the health risk to customers, the agents brought the matter to the attention of the Public Health Department of the Canary Islands Government. Inspectors took samples to determine if, despite the dates, they were suitable for human consumption. Obviously, alarms were raised and results said: they are considered to be "very harmful" to health and could cause serious "headaches, diarrhoea, fever, nausea, and vomiting if ingested”.

The seized items will be destroyed and the store faces a sanction from the General Directorate of Public Health, which will be in charge of determining the fine and actions against the supermarket and its owners.