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Domestic and foreign milk powder safety issues

Posted on November 18, 2019 by Josephine

In recently, on December 11th the food and drug inspection information released by the Guangdong Food and Drug Administration on its official website in 2015 (the 17th issue) showed that 28 batches of special dietary foods were recently sampled, of which 3 batches were unqualified. The qualified product involved Uniris, Dr. Aisheng, and Meiliyou 3 brands.

It is reported that the specific information on the nominal production and business units, products and unqualified indicators involved in this unqualified sample involves Jin Ruiyou produced on November 20, 2014, by Shaanxi Unilis Dairy Co., Ltd. is a specification of 800g/can of Jinneng Duosha sheep baby formula goat milk powder with exceeded selenium, Guangdong Deshenghai Nutrition Co., Ltd. produced on July 15, 2015, in the specification of 228g/box of Dr. Aisheng orange flavor nutritious rice noodles with excessive zinc and iron the standard, City Kangyuan Food Co., Ltd. produced on July 20th 2015in the specifications of 300g/box of Meili Youjin Nutritional Rice Noodles with not match net content.

It is reported that the special dietary foods for this sampling include baby mud (paste) canned food, granular canned food, juice canned food, milk-based larger infant and toddler formula, bean-based larger infants and young children, formulated foods, infant cereal supplements, infant high-protein cereal supplements, infant-based cereal supplements, infant biscuits or other cereal supplements for infants and young children. The standards and indicators in the sampling area based on GB 10765 Food Safety National Standard Infant Formula, GB 10767 Food Safety National Standard Large Infant and Infant Formula Food, GB/T 18979 Aflatoxin Determination in Foods Immunoaffinity Chromatography Purification Efficiently Standards and liquid chromatography and fluorometry. The sampling items include protein, fat, carbohydrate, melamine, aflatoxin M1 and other indicators in special dietary foods. Unqualified items are selenium, zinc, iron, net content, etc.

The problem in domestic milk powder quality.

Youlishi Goat Milk Powder Failed in the Sampling 

On August 2, the Fonterra incident was exposed, and people were afraid of unqualified milk power products. Many milk powder brands have been ravaged and have been removed. Chinese milk brands has entered a big storming and is facing a test. Dating back on the past, the domestic milk powder industry has not been calm until now and often exposed all kinds of quality problems. These incidents make people lose their confidence in the milk powder industry.

In May 2003, the rural areas of Fuyang, Anhui Province, found that infants and young children had a strange phenomenon of head swelling, weight loss, and low fever. They were found to suffering from poor quality milk powder and severe malnutrition. In the incident of the big head baby in Fuyang, 12 babies were died because of eating milk powder whose nutrition is not as fattened as rice flour soup, and 229 babies became big because of malnutrition. Faced with such a large number of victimization, the issue of milk powder safety has been valued by domestic consumers for the first time.

The year of 2008 has a symbolic significance in the minds of many people. China successfully hosted the Olympic Games and let the country’s people be proud of China. However, the old dairy company Sanlu was exposed to quality problems shortly, which also added troublesome to the people. In the same year, there were many incidents of kidney stones in infants and young children, which is caused by eating Sanlu milk powder. By September of that year, more than 10,000 infants and young children were hospitalized for treatment because of Sanlu milk powder and Four of them died. AQSIQ found that 69 batches of products from 22 domestic milk powder producers contained melamine. The incident has also become a landmark event in China's safety issue on milk powder.

In February 2009, the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection, and Quarantine (AQSIQ) detected that the Weiquan infantile milk powder contained the pathogenic bacteria Enterobacter sakazakii, which has the death rate of the disease with exceeding 50%.

In 2010, the domestic milk powder industry once again exposed serious quality problems. Three girls in Wuhan who consumed Shengyuan milk powder showed precocious puberty characteristics. The test results showed that the female hormone in the baby girl was high. In Guangdong, Shandong, and Jiangxi, infants who consumed this brand's milk powder showed similar symptoms. And such incidents have happened this year. This year's CCTV 3.15 party refers that Abbott's milk powder causes precocious puberty, which also led to parents' panic. Although after these two incidents the relevant departments indicated that the product inspection was fully qualified, it still caused a great trust crisis among the consumer groups.

The Beijing News reporter found that the main problems are concentrated on having Enterobacter sakazakii, exceeding the standard in aflatoxin M1, a total number of colonies and nitrate, and in veracious label in vitamin C, selenium, manganese, and other nutrients. The actual content exceeds the standard or lower than the national safety standards, and some content of nutrients are even 2-3 times higher than the value in the label.

Song Liang, a senior dairy analyst, believes that in the past few years, governments, companies, and associations have emphasized that our food safety is good, but we did find many problems in this test. Companies should reflect which part has gone wrong from the entire production, transportation, and industrial chain.

Foreign brands continue to have the problems in milk power

Youlishi Goat Milk Powder Failed in the Sampling 

Domestic brands of milk power constantly have a quality problem, so that consumers completely lose confidence in the domestic market. Consumers turned their attention to the foreign market of milk powder. This has also given birth to the strange phenomenon of high-priced panic buying of foreign milk powder. However, the quality of foreign milk powder also exists quite a few problems, and it was exposed to quality problems in the 1990s.

In 1999, the milk produced in the four EU countries was contaminated by the carcinogen dioxin, and six brands of dairy products were banned from sale in Hong Kong. The Ministry of Health issued an urgent notice to the whole country, and the relevant departments urgently removed 263 brands and 3,671 individual packages and conducted a unified inventory and storage. Four years later, the same problem occurred again in 2003, which also broke out a big food safety issue in history.

In 2000, Japan's Snow Printing Company's milk powder, low-fat milk powder, yogurt, and other milk products were found in Staphylococcus aureus toxin and all products forced to recall, causing 15,000 poisoning consumers.

In 2002, the Ersu maternal formula milk powder and the Erle infant formula milk powder produced by Wyeth Pharmaceuticals China Co., Ltd. were recalled due to exceeding the standard in Enterobacter sakazakii. Shortly after, another batch of Xueerle formula was recalled due to excessive nitrate. Wyeth has been in a hit.

Besides, the incidents of the quality problem in milk powder in the past year have continuously occurred. Danish-made Dumex in the Netherlands, Mellot in Germany, and Abbott in the United States all have mild or serious quality problems, and they all ended up with recalls or destruction.

In 2004, American Mead Johnson milk powder was identified as a substandard product due to exceeding the standard of Enterobacter sakazakii, and they destroyed the unqualified product and compensated for consumers. In 2006, Mead Johnson's infant formula was urgently recalled for detecting with metal particles. Just last year, the impurity object pushed Mead Johnson in the teeth of a storm, and the quality problem was worrying.

Nestlé, the food giant, has not been spared. In 2006, due to the detection of excessive iodine, it was forced to conduct a large-scale recall in the product. In the year of the Sanlu incident, Nestlé also suffered a crisis because it’s products detected melamine.

The quality of the New Zealand dairy industry has continued to ferment for a long period. Just a few months ago, CCTV exposed the sale of Friso's milk powder mixed with expired milk powder and its original import status was questioned. The test found that the milk powder did not meet the national standard and the protein content did not meet the standard requirements. Relevant departments also immediately sealed more than 60,000 bags of illegal milk powder that have not yet entered the market. 

Infant milk powder in foreign markets was again an earthquake. Last week, the State Food and Drug Administration notified that in the sampling of infant formula milk powder in 2014, 48 batches of is unqualified milk powder from 23 domestic enterprises and 4 import distributors. The problems are that it contains Enterobacter sakazakii and exceeds the standard in Aflatoxin M1, the total number of colonies, and nitrate. And vitamin C, chlorine and other nutrients do not meet the national food safety standards. In the exposed problem of milk powder, there are 25 milk products at risk of these food safety risks, occupying more than half. Another 23 batches of milk powder did not have food safety risks, but the labeled nutrient indicators did not match the actual content.

Song Liang, a senior dairy analyst, believes that this sampling test reflects the country's determination to fight with unqualified problems in milk power with no tolerance and partiality. And it also reflects the game between the country's elimination of obsolete production capacity of the dairy industry and local protectionism. It can be said that since the melamine incident, a severe punishment has been taken in 2008. He also suggested that the range of country's sampling for milk powder should cover domestic and imported milk powder, and the imported milk powder should not be excluded. Otherwise there will be serious security safety hazard!

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