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A relief, but questions remain on botulism

28 August 2013

A relief, but questions remain on botulism

This afternoon’s confirmation that the bacteria found in Fonterra whey power is not the dangerous Clostridium botulinum is a huge relief, the Green Party said today.

“Everyone is breathing a sigh of relief with this news, especially parents whose children have been fed the baby formula made with this whey powder,” Green Party Co-leader Russel Norman said today.

“This announcement does however throw up a whole layer of new questions that need answering,” Dr Norman said.

“The Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI) and Fonterra both need to take an extremely hard look at how this fiasco has developed.

“Why was the bacteria wrongfully identified in the first place? And given that the original test showed Clostridium botulinum, why was it allowed to continue to progress into the infant formula food chain?

“Why was MPI able to test the product for the bacterium in less than a month whereas it took Fonterra three months and it now seems that they came up with an incorrect result?

“This new twist in the story is further evidence that we need strong regulations, and can’t leave this sort of monitoring up to private companies.

“Our 100% pure brand has taken a real beating through this contamination and the global recall. The Ministry needs to be focusing on how to assure customers that our regulations are able to provide clean, safe food.”


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