FDA Detains All China Milk Products

Two months after vast quantities of milk from China were found to contain melamine, sickening 53,000 children and sending 13,000 to hospital, the FDA announced all Chinese milk imports will be stopped at the border until they’re proven melamin-free.. While it’s taken them a while to do this, banning entire categories of products from specific countries is a rare move, and it will have long-lasting impact. “It’s impossible to get off the alert list,” said Benjamin England, a former FDA lawyer. Unscrupulous food makers adulterate products with melamine because they fool testing equipment to make the product look high in protein. In spring ’07, about two dozen pets died after eating pet food tainted with melamine.

F.D.A. Detains Chinese Imports for Testing [NYT] (Photo: amyadoyzie)


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  1. altryan says:

    This was a long overdue move…

  2. juri squared says:

    Let’s not forget about all the babies poisoned in China by tainted formula. The idea of someone intentionally poisoning hundreds of people (or pets) just to shave a few cents off their bottom line sickens me.

  3. Triborough says:

    We would be a hell of a lot better off in the safety if we just banned all Chinese produced crap.

  4. The Unicorn says:

    you do kind of have to wonder what they’re going to do with all that leftover melamine if they can’t put it into exported milk anymore…

  5. oneliketadow says:

    2 years in the making, the FDA actually does something about China!

  6. BluePlastic says:

    I can’t understand the thinking of the people who do this. Even if they don’t care about people or pets getting sick, you’d think they’d be able to figure out that once the news gets out, no one is going to want to buy any food from them at all. They must think they can hide it forever or it will all blow over and they can start doing it again.

    • randomangela47 says:

      @BluePlastic: Part of the problem is that melamine is in the animal feed. Does anyone on here know how long that stays in the system? In the milk scandal, melamine was added to watered down milk, but there was also a problem with eggs (saw the news story a few weeks ago, I think Taiwan was blocking eggs from China) — melamine was in chicken feed, then wound up in their eggs.

      Too bad we don’t have better labeling laws, which would enable consumers to avoid all food products including ingredients from China…

  7. AlphaWolf says:

    There is a video on YouTube that puts up a convincing argument that the FDA deliberately delayed doing this recall until after the presidential election. This is something that could have hurt incumbents in the senate also so it is not that far fetched.

    It is really sad when other governments can act quickly, and ours is paralyzed by politics.

  8. feline says:

    “In spring ’07, about two dozen pets died after eating pet food tainted with melamine”

    In Spring of 2007, 16 of Menu Foods’ in-house test animals died.

    The number of pets killed is unknown. The FDA admits to having received over 20,000 calls from pet owners reporting illnesses and deaths, but they have never provided a number. The Oregon Veterinary Medical Association reported at least 49 deaths alone. Estimates range to the 5-10,000 range. Please don’t perpetuate the incredibly misleading official count provided by the FDA. It minimizes the fact that we had canaries in the coal mine…. our pets. And the FDA ignored the warning sign before it ended up in human food sources.

  9. anonvmoos says:

    what we need is a melamine detection system.

    that and less melamine/lead/other toxin poisoning from china. what was it last time? antifreeze in the toothpaste?


  10. socalrob of the 24 and a half century says:

    Coming from china I’m shocked it wasn’t full of lead or some other chemical. Didn’t china have the date-rape drug / aqua dot glue thing?

  11. azntg says:

    Way overdue.

    This takes place WAY after the Chinese themselves brew up a sh*tstorm about the melamine incident? Unacceptable.

  12. MrEvil says:

    you mean there aren’t enough dairies in this country we have to import milk from China? If you asked my grandfather to sell his milk for the prices that the dairies today are selling it for wholesale, he’d be livid. My grandfather got nearly $5/gallon (Indexed to inflation) for milk back in the 50’s and 60’s.

  13. Cycledoc says:

    Interesting, the delay raises the question who the FDA is supposed to protect.

    And no I don’t think it has anything to do with political incumbents. More like the businesses that routinely import food, specifically milk products, from China. Bizarre.

  14. Red_Flag says:

    It’s not just milk. It’s gotten into a lot of things down the hierarchy…

    Last I heard is melamine-tainted chicken eggs. (Melamilk — bit catchier, no? — was being mixed in with chicken feed and… yah. Not so good)

  15. lastingsmilledge says:

    ….and suddenly that great deal i got on 4 cases of ito en teas doesn’t look like such a great deal.

  16. randomd00d says:

    Man, I thought all milk sold in the US was made there. Guess I’d better doublecheck all the containers.

    Any idea what company imports milk and sells it?

  17. Justifan says:

    and this is just the short cuts we know about….