November 7, 2008


China shuts down 128 dairy producers over milk scandal

About 128 of 638 dairy producers have been closed as of Sunday due to the melamine-tainted milk scandal, according to state media.


Raw milk purchases increased 28 percent, milk production rose 58 percent and milk powder grew 37 percent from Oct 2 to Nov 2, but public confidence is slow in returning, said Zhang Li, director general of the ministry's consumer goods industry division.


Tighter regulation of the milk industry is difficult because some dairy manufacturers lack adequate testing equipment, said Zhang.


In addition, the central government said local authorities intercepted 191 batches of problematic imports in July, including two Australian infant milk brands that failed bacteria standards. Some analysts, however, saw the release of the news as a deflection of criticism of the melamine scandal that has killed at least four infants and sickened 53,000 others.

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