Melamine found in confectionery around the globe
Multinational confectionery giants have defended the integrity of their products in the wake of the melamine in Chinese milk powder scandal.
However, Cadbury has been forced to withdraw products produced in its Beijing plant, and Mars has been shocked by an Indonesian authority announcement that M&Ms and Snickers made in China contain melamine.
Cadbury voluntarily withdrew from sale all products produced at its Beijing plant ” most of which were exported to Hong Kong and Taiwan, although 180g bags of Cadbury Eclairs were also on sale in Australia. No other Cadbury products in Australia were affected. “We are undertaking this voluntary withdrawal as a precaution to maintain our high quality standards,” said Cadbury.
Meanwhile, Mars said it was confident that none of its chocolate or confectionery products made in China include any dairy ingredients adulterated with melamine. Food safety regulators in Korea, Malaysia, Taiwan, Thailand and Hong Kong confirmed that Mars chocolate products were safe for consumption, as did an independent German laboratory. However, BPOM, the Indonesian regulatory authority, announced that M&Ms and Snickers
products made in China did contain melamine. Mars said it was extremely surprised’ by this and was working with the Indonesian authorities to resolve the issue.
Melamine is an industrial chemical that has been found in infant milk formula made in China. At least three children died and tens of thousands needed hospital treatment after consuming the formula.
Chinese confectionery products on sale around the world have now been found to contain the chemical at higher then permitted levels. Food safety regulations in many countries state that food cannot contain more than 2.5 mg/kg of melamine. However, the New Zealand Food Safety Authority found that White Rabbit Creamy Candies, a brand manufactured by Guanshengyuan Food General Factory in China, contained 180 mg/kg of melamine. EU testing of the brand also found certain batches to be contaminated, albeit with lower levels of melamine. Batches of Koala brand biscuits made by Lotte China Foods Co and on sale in the UK were found to contain melamine at 4.98 mg/kg.
The European Commission has asked EU member states to carry out checks on all products imported from China that contain more than 15% milk or products where the percentage of milk content cannot be established. Products found to contain more than 2.5mg/kg are to be destroyed.