News last update:6 Aug 2012

China: 300,000 cases melamine infection

China's Health Ministry said six babies may have died after consuming tainted milk powder, up from a previous official toll of three, and announced a six-fold increase in its tally of infants sickened in the scandal -- to nearly 300,000.

It was the first time since Sept. 21 that health authorities have revised the total number of babies sickened by milk powered adulterated with the industrial chemical melamine. The previous total was about 50,000.

The scandal spread rapidly as melamine was found in other kinds of dairy products such as liquid milk, yogurt and chocolates. It prompted a string of recalls of Chinese-made milk and products containing milk in dozens of countries.

Animal feed
Later investigations also discovered it was being added to animal feed after finding melamine-spiked eggs. Melamine was also found in a Chinese-made pet food ingredient that killed dogs and cats in North America in 2007.

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