Materia Medica Malaysiana

September 25, 2008

Government imposes new ruling on China food

Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 1:05 pm

Star: PUTRAJAYA: With immediate effect, food products from China that could be contaminated with melamine will also be held at entry points in the country for tests to ensure they are safe for consumption.
Health Minister Datuk Liow Tiong Lai said the procedure would be in place until the melamine-tainted milk issue was resolved.
“We are very careful. This is a new precaution,” he told reporters at his ministry yesterday. “The Chinese government must solve the issue as quickly as possible.
“We are checking all the time. It is not only on melamine. We oversee the whole aspect of food safety in the country.”
He said constant monitoring was already a routine prior to the latest health scare, resulting in 55 products being banned last year.
Since the ministry started inspection of dairy products from China on Tuesday, 53 items including chocolate, candies and ice cream have been barred from entry pending Chemistry De-partment tests.
Liow said automatic rejection of baby milk from China was started after the first infant death was reported there on Sept 13. The ban was widened two days later to include dairy products.
“We were quicker than Singa-pore in banning products from China and expanding our scope.”
Asked whether it was necessary to consider having separate guidelines for food from China, Liow said the ministry’s Food Safety Information System was sufficient.
He asked doctors at clinics and hospitals to inform the ministry if they had treated patients for suspected melamine poisoning.
At the Cabinet meeting yesterday, all relevant ministries and agencies were ordered to work together, he said.
He also said his Chinese counterpart, Chen Zhu, had given an assurance that China would give its full co-operation to the World Health Organisation and follow its recommendations.

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