Nutrition

News 326 views last update:6 Aug 2012

Swiss pull false corn gluten from market

Official feed controllers of the Swiss research institute Agroscope Liebefeld in Posieux (ALP) stated that melamine contaminated corn gluten were imported in Switzerland from China.

Certain Chinese exporters had qualified cereal by-products mixed with urea as being corn gluten. Although urea is allowed in ruminant feeds, its derivates melamine and cyanuric acid, which were also found, are prohibited. ALP has blocked the questionable loads.

ALP officers took 63 corn gluten samples of which 11 samples did not contain corn gluten. These falsified products contained a mixture of grain by-products, mainly wheat, in which large amounts of urea were found.

Analysis of the samples revealed that up to 15% of urea was added to finally reach a raw protein content of 60% like it would be expected in a corn gluten sample.

Two other ingredients, melamine and cyanuric acid were found in four of the 11 samples. Both substances are not permitted in the animal feeding.

2,500 tonnes imports
The fraud concerns about 2,500 tonnes of corn gluten, which were imported during the last six months into Switzerland.

Following the investigations of ALP, and together with the feed trade, the doubtful loads were identified and blocked. Depending upon the found contents materials that were permitted have been relabelled for ruminant feeding or destroyed if they contained illegal products.

A large part of the commodities had already been fed to farm animals before they were discovered, but according to information of the European Feed safety Authority (EFSA) and the US Food and Drug Adiminstration (FDA) there is no danger for consumers.

China main supplier
Some 80% of all corn gluten originates from China. Corn gluten is a protein-rich raw material (approx. 60% raw protein), which is widely used in ruminant and poultry feeding.

In the past Switzerland imported these feedstuffs from the US. But GM-problems forced the Swiss to look for a new supplier, which became China. Annually 50,000 tonnes is imported.

Editor AllAboutFeed

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