Botulism milk powder scandal

On August 3, 2013, the world's biggest diary exporter Fonterra said a bacteria, Clostridium botulinum, which can cause botulism and affects muscles, had contaminated 40 tonnes of its whey protein, most of which was sold to manufacturers to make their own products, including milk powder. A day later, China banned all milk powder imports from New Zealand. Hong Kong recalled 80,000 cans of Cow & Gate baby formula. Other companies that were affected include Shanghai Yanjiu; Dumex Baby Food, a Danone brand; Wahaha Health Food and Wahaha Import & Export; Coca-Cola (China) and Abbott.

Vietnam orders recall, Russia halts imports of Fonterra milk powder

PUBLISHED : Monday, 05 August, 2013, 11:44am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 06 August, 2013, 12:42pm

Vietnam has ordered an immediate recall and halt of circulation of a milk powder manufactured by Fonterra and Russia has stopped all imports of some New Zealand dairy products in response to a botulism scare.

Abbott Laboratories' office in Vietnam, the owner of the milk powder manufactured by Fonterra in New Zealand, will conduct the recall and report the result by August 9, the Health Ministry-run Vietnam Foodstuff Safety Department said in a statement on its website .

Fonterra, the world’s biggest dairy exporter, said it had sold New Zealand-made whey protein concentrate contaminated with Clostridium Botulinum to importers in six countries for possible use in infant formula, body building powder, and other products.

Fonterra announced on Saturday that up to 1,000 tonnes of infant formula, sports drinks and other products sold in seven countries could be tainted after tests turned up bacteria in whey protein that could cause botulism.

Ministry for Primary Industries Acting Director-General Scott Gallacher said on Monday that China has halted imports of all Fonterra milk powder and whey products, whether sent from New Zealand or Australia.

He said Russia has placed a wider ban on all New Zealand dairy products, even though Russia wasn’t among the countries to receive tainted products.

Reuters in Hanoi and Associated Press in Wellington


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