Energy drink maker faces inspection after consecutive insect scandals

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The Number One bottle containing a fly-like object that truck driver Nguyen Xuan Dinh bought from a café in Tien Giang. Photo: Hoang Phuong The Number One bottle containing a fly-like object that truck driver Nguyen Xuan Dinh bought from a café in Tien Giang. Photo: Hoang Phuong

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Vietnam's Food Safety Administration has ordered an inspection of Tan Hiep Phat Beverage Group after customers in two separate cases claimed to have found insects in its energy drink bottles. 
The inspection, to be conducted by Binh Duong Province's health officials, will focus on the production of the energy drink, the national food safety watchdog said in a statement. 
Inspectors have been instructed to hand down strict punishment against violations found, if any, at the company and then inform the public on the issue.
Earlier, Vo Van Minh of Tien Giang Province claimed that there was a fly in his Number One bottle, a popular energy drink made by Tan Hiep Phat. 
He reached an agreement with the company to get VND500 million (US$23,425) for his silence, but was arrested when receiving the money as the company had reported the case to police.
Initial investigation found that the plastic bottle could have been tampered with since the cap appeared slightly distorted.
Right after this first case, Nguyen Xuan Dinh, another customer from Tien Giang Province, claimed that his Number 1 bottle also had a fly-like object.
After failing to secure a few cases of the energy drink as compensation from the company, and in the wake of Minh's arrest, he informed local authorities. 
The privately owned drinks company, one of the country's top beverage producers, has been caught in several food safety scandals, including customer complaints over its herbal tea Dr. Thanh and soy milk products. 
In 2009, authorities found nearly 67 tons of expired food flavorings in the company's warehouses in Binh Duong Province and Ho Chi Minh City. 

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