News last update:6 Aug 2012

CFIA orders product testing on melamine

Dairy ingredients and soybean meal coming from China for use in Canadian livestock feed now must be tested for melamine, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) along with the Canada Border Services Agency said.

Apart from Chinese soybean meal, CFIA's new directive covers imports from China of whole, skim or partly skimmed milk powder; whey powder, modified whey products and casein products; dairy protein concentrates; and recycled dairy food products such as liquid milk, yogurt or infant formula.

Importers, CFIA said, will now have to provide test results indicating that ingredients coming from China -- either directly, or indirectly through other countries -- don't contain detectable levels of melamine and cyanuric acid. Results of analysis must be provided at the time of importation, CFIA said. If an importer can't show that the product meets the new requirements, the product will be "detained and referred to the CFIA for assessment."

FIA's new feed directive follows a similar analysis and documentation regime imposed earlier this month on imports of foods containing milk or milk products from China, particularly foods and formula for infants. Health Canada has set new interim standards for maximum levels of melamine and cyanuric acid in foods.

Health Canada's interim standards make very small allowances for melamine that finds its way into food through "environmental exposure" such as in packaging or processing, rather than through deliberate spiking.

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