Baby formula

Baby, or infant, formula is a manufactured food for babies often used as a substitute for breast milk. It is a powder or liquid concentrate that is mixed with water and fed through a bottle. It is widely used in Asia, which represents 53% of the global market share. In Hong Kong, a shortage in availability of baby formula led to restrictions on how much could be taken out of the city and into mainland China.

Review two-tin limit on formula

Review two-tin limit on formula

There can be little doubt about enforcement of the so-called milk ban introduced two years ago. The figures for arrests, court fines and seizures of infant milk formula attest to that.

Monday, 23 March, 2015, 11:25am 2 comments

New infant milk formula rules 'are not targeted at specific brands'

To tighten quality controls in the domestic market, China now requires all infant milk formula produced overseas to be registered with the nation's quality watchdog before it can be sold in the country. Photo: AFP

A new regulation restricting market access to 41 foreign infant milk formula manufacturers from May 1 is not intended to exclude any major brands, according to a researcher at a government think-tank.

3 May 2014 - 4:08am 3 comments

Food import inspections increased after claims sell-by dates changed on baby formula

A toddler and his mother in Haikou in Hainan province shop for baby milk powder. The government introduced measures last year to tighten control of the industry. Photo: AFP

The government’s quality and safety watchdog has stepped up inspections of all imported food after allegations that the expiry dates on some baby formula produced by an Australian company had been tampered with.

17 Mar 2014 - 3:23pm

Milk powder supplies still not meeting needs

Milk formula in a Wan Chai pharmacy. Photo: David Wong

Shortages of infant milk powder are still plaguing many areas of the city a year after an export limit was introduced, with popular brands unavailable in 90 per cent of stores in some districts, according to a watchdog's report.

The Consumer Council canvassed 137 shops in 10 districts to document a shortage of the four more popular brands.

24 Jan 2014 - 4:51pm

'No rush' to scrap two-tin milk limit

Government says the infant formula restriction will remain in place for now after consultant casts doubt on effectiveness of coupon scheme.

The government is in no rush to lift the two-tin restriction on infant formula for outbound travellers because a coupon scheme to ensure supplies for locals has been less successful than hoped.

5 Dec 2013 - 4:45am 1 comment

Landmark shift in 'one child' rule brings market bubbles

Landmark shift in 'one child' rule brings market bubbles

Last week, institutional and individual investors poured money into so-called "second child" concept stocks, which can be baby milk producers or even piano makers as long as they are more or less related to how to grow a child on the mainland in the short or long-term.

25 Nov 2013 - 8:16am

Baby formula is contaminated with aluminium, UK study finds

Cow & Gate and Aptamil brand baby formula were both found to contain aluminium Photo: David Wong

Infant milk formulas are contaminated with aluminium, which risks serious negative health effects for children and may contribute to ill health as adults, a UK study has found.

11 Oct 2013 - 6:32pm

Holiday rush takes toll on formula stocks

Pharmacies are running out of popular infant formula brands on a regular basis. Photo: K. Y. Cheng

A popular baby milk formula sold out in many pharmacies yesterday as the government started its "golden week" stocktaking to decide whether it can lift the export limit on such products.

2 Oct 2013 - 4:26pm 1 comment

Beijing hints at displeasure over Hong Kong's handling of baby formula issue

Members of New Territories Association of Societies (NTAS) protest over food safety concerns in baby formula, at Central Government Offices, Admiralty. Photo: Dickson Lee

A top mainland official in charge of Hong Kong affairs yesterday urged the city's political appointees to improve their sensitivity when it comes to policies which have an impact on the mainland.

25 Sep 2013 - 3:57am 15 comments

Authorities may scrap limit on milk powder

Secretary for Food and Health Dr Ko Wing-man. Photo: Sam Tsang.

Ko said in a radio interview authorities would assess whether an adequate supply of the milk powder could be guaranteed for locals before and after the upcoming "golden week" holiday for National Day on October 1.

25 Sep 2013 - 7:36am 5 comments

CCTV broadcasts fresh bribery claims against baby formula firm Dumex

French food group Danone says it is investigating Chinese state TV allegations that it bribed hospital staff to give its milk powder to new-born babies. Photo: Reuters

Chinese state media yesterday broadcast further allegations of bribery against Dumex, a baby formula subsidiary of French food and beverage giant Danone.

CCTV last week quoted a former Dumex sales manager alleging the company had bribed hospital staff in the city of Tianjin to feed its milk powder to newborn babies.

24 Sep 2013 - 11:40am

Fonterra pulls ‘DCD’ milk powder in Sri Lanka, disputes test

Fonterra chief executive Theo Spierings (centre) with head of New Zealand Milk Products Gary Romano (left) and Kerry Underhill, head of communications in Auckland, New Zealand. Photo: AP

New Zealand-based dairy giant Fonterra Co-operative said on Sunday it had withdrawn milk powder under orders from the Sri Lankan authorities for showing traces of the toxic agricultural chemical dicyandiamide (DCD), although it disputed the accuracy of the testing.

11 Aug 2013 - 4:53pm

New Zealand trade body calls for more milk data

More information about the suppliers of the various ingredients that go into milk formula should be available to parents.

David Whitwam said more information about the suppliers of the various ingredients that go into milk formula should be available to parents. He said greater transparency would also help isolate the source of any future incidents surrounding the safety or quality of milk formula.

10 Aug 2013 - 5:40am

China threatens heavier fines after baby formula probe

Mead Johnson and Biostime milk pwder products on shelves at a Beijing supermarket. Photo: Reuters

Foreign suppliers of infant milk formula who knowingly breach the anti-monopoly law can expect tough penalties, China's pricing regulator said a day after six producers were given record fines for manipulating prices.

9 Aug 2013 - 8:50am

New Zealand, world's largest dairy exporter, tightens quality control on baby formula

A worker packs boxes of butter at Fonterra Cooperative Group Ltd.'s milk processing facility in Te Awamutu, New Zealand, on November 12, 2009. Photo: AFP

New Zealand announced a wide-ranging review of its infant formula regulations Thursday, saying it wanted to protect its reputation as demand for the product booms in markets such as China.

27 Jun 2013 - 4:16pm