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Wal-Mart Employees Released in China After Pork Labeling Arrests

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Wal-Mart Employees Released in China After Pork Labeling Arrests
People shop for meat in the re-opened Nanping West Road Wal-Mart Stores Inc. hypermarket in Chongqing, China. Photographer: Ariana Lindquist/Bloomberg

May 1 (Bloomberg) --Two Wal-Mart Stores Inc. employees, were released in the Chinese city of Chongqing six months after their arrest in connection with a probe into mislabeled pork, said Christina Lee, a spokeswoman for the retailer.

Police in China arrested the two workers in October amid a probe of the retailer for mislabeling ordinary pork as organic. Their release comes after the Chinese Politburo’s suspension of Bo Xilai, the city’s former Communist Party chief.

Lee declined to say why the employees had been released. Bentonville, Arkansas-based Wal-Mart, the world’s largest retailer, was fined and ordered by local officials to halt operations of some outlets during the probe in October. Anthony Rose, another spokesman, said the two were released last week.

Wal-Mart later resumed operating the stores and said it was reviewing management procedures in all China locations. The company said at the time it had hired a management company to improve third-party inspection, had given more training to employees in Chongqing, and planned to set up facilities in the city to check food quality.

To contact the reporter on this story: Anjali Cordeiro in Hong Kong at acordeiro2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephanie Wong at swong139@bloomberg.net

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