By Maureen Fan
Friday, February 22, 2008; Page A17
BEIJING, Feb. 21 — Stung by accusations that Beijing‘s food and water are contaminated, China on Thursday defended its standards and expressed disappointment that U.S. athletes will ship their own meat to China for the Olympic Games.
“I feel it’s a pity that they have decided to bring their own food,” said Kang Yi, chief of the catering division for the Beijing Olympics organizing committee, adding that the organizers had made plans for the athletes to dine together. “If the American delegation is not at that gathering, it’s a pity.”
A report in the New York Times this month said the U.S. Olympic Committee, in part worried about steroids in chicken, had made arrangements with sponsors to ship 25,000 pounds of lean protein to China two months before the opening ceremony. The 600-member U.S. delegation will eat at its own training center and avoid food at the athletes’ village, which will house and feed 17,000 people during the Games, the paper said.