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Continued efforts to deal with whey contamination

Ministers underline continued efforts to deal with whey contamination

Trade Minister Tim Groser and Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy have underlined the continued efforts of the New Zealand Government to deal with the market effects of the possible contamination of some Fonterra dairy exports.

“The safety of consumers, especially children, both in New Zealand and in our trading partners remains our number one priority,” says Mr Groser.

Mr Groser says the New Zealand Government is taking a very precautionary approach.

“We have made all efforts to inform the regulatory authorities in known affected countries, and have provided full information to help those authorities trace and recall product and advise consumers.

“We are working round the clock with Fonterra and other companies affected. New Zealand has ceased issuing export certification for any potential at-risk products.

“New Zealand is also providing updated information to all other unaffected markets to maintain the transparent and frank approach adopted since the start of this situation.”

Mr Guy says that only a very limited range of dairy products exported from New Zealand is at risk of contamination.

“Most exports of New Zealand dairy products are unaffected, including our major exports of Whole Milk Powder (WMP) and Skim Milk Powder (SMP), butter and cheese, and which account for the large majority of Fonterra’s dairy product exports. Our trading partners can continue to deal in these products with full confidence in their quality and safety.”

Products known to be potentially affected are confined to three batches of 38 metric tonnes of whey protein concentrate manufactured at one Fonterra plant in New Zealand. These were subsequently used as an ingredient to manufacture approximately 870 metric tonnes of infant formula, juice/dairy beverages, yoghurt, body building powder as well as animal stock food.

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