China finds more milk items tainted with melamine

July 13, 2010

According to the Associated Press, Chinese authorities have found dairy products in at least three provinces tainted with melamine—an industrial chemical that killed six babies and sickened hundreds of thousands more in 2008. The discovery suggests toxic milk remains a lingering danger in China despite a crackdown two years ago that saw dozens arrested and two people, a dairy farmer and a milk salesmen, executed. Some of the recently found milk was melamine-tainted powder that state media said was likely stockpiled instead of destroyed two years ago.

In June, authorities found 64 tons of raw materials for making milk powder and 12 tons of finished powder tainted with melamine at a factory in the far western province of Qinghai, the official Xinhua News Agency said. In a separate case, they said they seized about 1,000 packets of tainted milk powder in the northeastern province of Jilin.

Xinhua said the owner and a production manager from Dongyuan Dairy Factory in Qinghai have been detained after tests showed some of their products had 500 times the legal limit for melamine.

Xinhua said Dongyuan had already sold some of the tainted goods to businesses in Jiangsu and Zhejiang provinces —a supply chain that suggests melamine-tainted milk products could still be available in many parts of the country. In Zhejiang, about three tons of Dongyuan milk powder was used to make ice cream and other products, but most of it was still being processed and had not entered the market. The Xinhua report didn't say whether there were any reports of people getting sick from the products.

AP article