NZ dairy giant faces new milk scare in Sri Lanka

August 10, 2013

New Zealand dairy giant Fonterra, already under pressure over a global botulism scare, is facing fresh trouble over milk powder in Sri Lanka allegedly mixed with a farm chemical.

The company said Saturday it had completed a recall of two batches of under Sri Lankan government orders because of allegations it contained traces of chemical DCD.

Dicyandiamide, or DCD, is added to pastures to increase .

A New Zealand government website says DCD is not toxic and poses no food safety risk but adds that international regulators are likely to view DCD residues as a "contaminant".

However, Sri Lanka's said it considers DCD to be a "" that should not be in and that is why it ordered the recall, spokesman Dharma Wanninayake told AFP.

Fonterra, whose brands are the market leader in Sri Lanka, accounting for nearly two thirds of imports, has denied its products contain any trace of DCD.

"Our milk is 100 percent pure," Fonterra spokesman Roshan Kulasuriya said. "But we complied with the directive and have completed the recall of the two batches said to contain traces of DCD by today (Saturday)."

The Sri Lankan action is unrelated to the global safety recall announced by Fonterra earlier this month after tests turned up a type of bacteria that could cause botulism.

New Zealand's government said last weekend products potentially tainted with botulism-causing bacteria included infant formula, , protein drinks and other beverages.

Fonterra has said the Sri Lankan government tests that allegedly found traces of the DCD chemical in its products were flawed and the results incorrect.

Meanwhile, Sri Lanka's Court of Appeal has slapped a temporary ban on Fonterra advertising.

The ban will remain in force until August 21 when test reports from foreign laboratories are expected, a court official said.

Following the scare earlier this month, Sri Lanka suspended the release of milk imported from New Zealand at a port in Colombo until an internationally recognised laboratory certifies they are toxin free.

Fonterra insists the batches at the port do not contain any harmful bacteria.

Sri Lanka imported $307 million-worth of milk and milk products in 2012 with the bulk coming from New Zealand and Australia, the central bank says.

The developments globally have been bad news for New Zealand's dairy industry which is a key driver of the nation's economy.

Explore further: Dairy CEO: Infant formula botulism scare is over

Related Stories

Dairy CEO: Infant formula botulism scare is over

August 7, 2013
The chief executive of New Zealand dairy giant Fonterra said Wednesday the risk that people could contract botulism from infant formula made with the company's whey concentrate has ended.

New Zealand botulism scare triggers global recall (Update)

August 3, 2013
New Zealand authorities have triggered a global recall of up to 1,000 tons of dairy products across seven countries after dairy giant Fonterra announced tests had turned up a type of bacteria that could cause botulism.

New Zealand firm defends milk safety after chemical find

January 28, 2013
New Zealand's Fonterra, the world's largest dairy exporter, said Monday that its milk was "100 percent" safe to drink despite tests finding trace elements of an agricultural chemical in milk powder.

China, Russia halt some NZ dairy imports

August 5, 2013
(AP)—A botulism scare has prompted China and Russia to stop importing New Zealand milk powder and other dairy products, denting the country's reputation as a supplier of safe, high quality food.

Recommended for you

To reduce postoperative pain, consider sleep—and caffeine

August 18, 2017
Sleep is essential for good mental and physical health, and chronic insufficient sleep increases the risk for several chronic health problems.

Despite benefits, half of parents against later school start times

August 18, 2017
Leading pediatrics and sleep associations agree: Teens shouldn't start school so early.

Doctors exploring how to prescribe income security

August 18, 2017
Physicians at St. Michael's Hospital are studying how full-time income support workers hired by health-care clinics can help vulnerable patients or those living in poverty improve their finances and their health.

Schoolchildren who use e-cigarettes are more likely to try tobacco

August 17, 2017
Vaping - or the use of e-cigarettes - is widely accepted as a safer option for people who are already smoking.

Federal snack program does not yield expected impacts, researchers find

August 17, 2017
A well-intentioned government regulation designed to offer healthier options in school vending machines has failed to instill better snacking habits in a sample of schools in Appalachian Virginia, according to a study by ...

In a nutshell: Walnuts activate brain region involved in appetite control

August 17, 2017
Packed with nutrients linked to better health, walnuts are also thought to discourage overeating by promoting feelings of fullness. Now, in a new brain imaging study, researchers at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.