A nationwide food hygiene check will be carried out by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to prepare for the new Food Hygiene Law, which will come into effect on July 1.

The pilot check has been conducted on agricultural materials and products in the northern province of Thanh Hoa and southern province of Tien Giang.

Many factories, distribution chains and shops for fertilisers, pesticides, veterinary items, food for breeding farms and aquaculture production, forestry plants, fruit and vegetable processing, fish sauce production, slaughterhouses, have been checked.

"For the first stage of the pilot project, one-third of checked units in these two provinces do not meet hygiene standards as control is loosened," said deputy minister Luong Le Phuong.

In the past, three ministries, including Healthcare, Trade and Industry, Agriculture and Rural Development, have the same responsibility for oversight on food hygiene.

The problem will be adjusted in the new law as the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development will be appointed to have the main responsibility.

Following the pilot project in Thanh Hoa and Tien Giang, the remaining provinces will carry out food hygiene checks.

Business and manufacturing units will be responsible for achieving quality. Those that do not meet hygiene requirements will have a limited time to upgrade. After that, they can shut down their businesses or take their case to court./.