Milk scare in China’s south-west

Posted by Rita Mu

Police have seized 26 tonnes of melamine-tainted milk powder from an ice-cream manufacturer in Chongqing, south-west China.

Melamine is an industrial chemical normally used in plastic production. 

According to media reports, the tainted powder is likely to have come from north China’s Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region and has not filtered through to the consumer.

The Chongqing incident follows a food safety scare earlier this month in the north-western region of the country where milk was found tainted with nitrate and led to the death of three people and left 35 others seriously ill.

The latest seizure in Chongqing is the second time melamine-tainted milk has been found in the region. In 2008, three babies reportedly died and 300,000 others fell sick after milk was found contaminated with the chemical.

According to China’s Xinhua news agency, Chinese authorities issued an official regulation on levels of melamine in food products last Wednesday.

Under the new regulation, infant food products containing more than one milligram per kilogram of food will be prohibited from sale in China. The maximum tolerable level of melamine in other food products is 2.5 mg for per kg of food.

Image: Chinese families whose children died as a result of drinking milk contaminated with melamine protest in front of a government building in Beijing on May 8, 2009, Source: upi.com

Send this to a friend