Banned Chinese milk in Kenya

October 22, 2008 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, October 22 – The government has impounded 50 cartons of banned chinese milk products at the port of Mombasa.

Public Health Minister Beth Mugo told a news conference on Wednesday that the products, weighing 2276 kilograms would be reshipped to Shanghai, unopened.
“We are very alert on this front but we want to call on the citizens to make sure that none of this milk slips into the market. This is proof that it is still possible for the milk to come,” Mrs Mugo said, adding that public health officers in the country had been instructed to keep vigil of the products.

The Minister said that the products were confiscated at Kilindini by the Port Health Officer on October 4. The Kenya Bureau of Standards, she said, was also on high alert over the penetration of the products into the country. The Minister nevertheless urged Kenyans to scrutinise dairy products although she was quick to add that Kenya imports minimal amounts of dairy products from China.

The government imposed a ban on milk and dairy products from China last month following reports that some companies had added harmful substance melamine. Chinese authorities said last month that four children succumbed to death due to the effects of melamine while more than 50,000 others were hospitalised.

The Chinese government subsequently recalled the products across the globe. Melamine causes Kidney stones and Kidney failure. More countries in the world also imposed the ban to protect their citizens.

Mrs Mugo said that it was likely the products could have been on transit by the time of the ban. She pointed out that this was not likely to compromise relations between the two countries.

“China is a friendly country and we are doing a lot of other business with it. This is not a matter we must take with its government because we are not quarreling. This is a private business venture,” She reiterated adding that the Kenyan authorities has already informed the Chinese officials of their move which was in accordance with the agreements of the World Trade Organisation.


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