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DOH testing New Zealand milk powder, will release results soon

2013/01/26 21:16:50

Taipei, Jan. 26 (CNA) The Department of Health (DOH) said Saturday that it is testing samples of milk powder imports from New Zealand for residue levels of a toxic substance and will release the results next week.

"We have selected 10 samples of milk powder (from New Zealand)," said Kang Jaw-jou, director-general of the department's Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

The results of the tests will be released Monday at the earliest, he said at a news conference.

Kang's remarks came after the Wall Street Journal reported Jan. 24 that New Zealand's two biggest fertilizer companies -- Ravensdown Ltd. and Ballance Agri-Nutrients Ltd. -- had suspended sales of dicyandiamide (DCD) after low levels of the toxic substance were found in the country's dairy products.

If the tests in Taiwan show a high level of DCD residues in the products, the health department will recall the dairy products, Kang said.

Meanwhile, the public should not worry too much about the consumption of milk powder from New Zealand, he said.

The New Zealand government has given the assurance that low levels of the toxic substance are no threat to consumers' health, Kang said.

The 10 samples selected were milk powder for infants, children and adults, said Tsai Shu-jean, director of the FDA’s Food Safety Division, at the news conference.

New Zealand supplies 78 percent of Taiwan’s imported powdered milk, according to Tsai.

(By Elaine Hou)