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The Department of Health, Taipei City Government Announces Random Tangyuan Inspection Results for the 2022 Winter Solstice

The winter solstice occurs on December 22 of this year. Before the winter solstice, the Department of Health, Taipei City Government sent inspectors to restaurants and other establishments selling tangyuan, or glutinous rice balls, to conduct random inspections. A total of twenty items were inspected at random, including fifteen types of tangyuan and five types of fillings (such as taro balls, yam balls, etc.). Preservatives, maleic acid, and coloring agents were among the items up for inspection, which have all been found to be compliant.


The Department of Health, Taipei City Government urges tangyuan manufacturers not to overuse food additives and instead focus on the production process, environmental hygiene, and self-management, including product quality and hygiene, personnel, equipment, environmental hygiene, and so on. The Department of Health also recommends consumers to pay attention to the following when purchasing tangyuan products from a tangyuan manufacturing or retail site:

  1. Take note of the cleanliness and hygiene of the working personnel’s hands, such as no long fingernails, no jewelry, no nail polish, no wounds, and requiring clean work clothes and caps.
  2. The tangyuan container as well as the floor, walls, ceiling, and working area of the manufacturing site should be kept clean.
  3. Take note of the freshness and storage method of ingredients (such as mung beans, eight-treasures beans, and taro balls cooked with tangyuan).
  4. Take note of the expiration date that is printed on the fully-packaged product. If you purchase frozen (refrigerated) tangyuan, you should also verify the storage temperature and whether the retail site’s temperature is conforming (e.g., frozen products should be sold in freezers below -18°C, and refrigerated products should be sold in refrigerators below 7°C), in order to preserve the product’s optimal freshness and prevent denaturation.