China Acts Swiftly in New Baby Formula Scare

Posted by: Frederik Balfour on April 7, 2009

China has shown it can act very quickly to protect the public from tainted foods when it wants to—-and when there are no vested domestic interests at stake. According to the official China Daily English language newspaper, the distributor of a NUK, a German-made powdered baby formula has ordered a nationwide recall of the product believed to contain traces of asbestos. The order came just one day after South Korean media revealed that the NUK brand was allegedly contaminated. China’s General Administration for Quality Supervision Inspection and Quarantine has launched a full investigation.

Kudos should go to both the distributor, Suzhou Dabao Baby Supplies and to the Chinese authorities for moving swiftly to protect the public. The speedy response to this potential health threat is a welcome development when you consider how China deliberately covered up the existence melamine-tainted milk supplies for several weeks last summer that resulted in the deaths of at least six babies and caused severe illness among hundreds of thousands of other infants. It makes you wonder if the melamine scandal would have come to light much sooner had it involved foreign manufacturers instead of local ones.

Reader Comments

Steven

April 8, 2009 1:09 AM

Still too slow. Actually not only infant formula is impacted, from reports from Korea, a lot more kinds of products are polluted by tained components that can stimulate cancer.

chenleilili

April 8, 2009 4:43 AM

to writer:"It makes you wonder if the melamine scandal would have come to light much sooner had it involved foreign manufacturers instead of local ones", does it always happen in your country? that's why U.S is so good at the economy pretection and that's why non-western countries are so hard to have big investment in hign-tech sectors of U.S for so-called security concern? Anything done by China is for the health of the public ,stop having so narrow oponion.

rob

April 8, 2009 11:47 AM

This is a distraction away from the problem. The problem is NOT with German or Indian products (which are the highest quality in the world).. it is with Chinese products.
Chinese can solve quality problems by simply buying all products from America, Europe and India.. and not producing or buying Chinese products.
This is an attempt by China to draw attention away from the fact that China cannot produce quality products. Pointing at Germans (of all people) will not solve anything.

Steven

April 8, 2009 5:26 PM

The recent news say 15 brands of US made infant formulas are polluted by high-tech component that can be found in rocket propellant. This component can damage brain development. I am sorry that Chinese gov are still waiting. Immediate action is urgently needed.

sam

April 9, 2009 12:41 AM

To Rob

Rob is certainly misinformed when he suggests China cannot make high quality products, I guess he hasnt heard of Huawei and a host of others.India is also guilty of making low quality and tainted products.Just looking at the American FDA Reports shows India to be very high on the rejected list

Need more info

April 9, 2009 2:16 AM

Actually I'm more interested with the news about tainted German products than about how swift the Chinese acted. Why businessweek didn't give more information about it? Is it because the product is western?

Chink Steven

April 9, 2009 3:46 AM

China is the worlds biggest security problem. It is a totalitarian state and its time is over. Lets send them a message. Stop trading with China.

James Balfour

April 9, 2009 3:49 AM

China is a smoke and mirrors country.
I don't see how we can get them to trade fairly. We should aim to reduce our dependence on them.

Steven

April 9, 2009 8:58 AM

The world realized that US is security problem of this world. toxic financial products dragged the world into muddy zone. I am wondering why yankees don't feel guilty.

FunnyIndian

April 10, 2009 2:32 AM

@ Rob , India`s highest quality product in the world is only The Cows` urine processed softdrink.

tom

April 12, 2009 9:28 PM

new york time reported in around 2006 that India had the largest lead products imported in the US. So if I was the little dot-head I wouldn't be talking crap. So if i was a curry-muncher i would go back to fuking my wife dog.

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Bloomberg Businessweek’s team of Asia reporters brings you the latest insights on business, politics, technology and culture from some of the world’s biggest and fastest-growing economies.

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