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Information on Melamine alternatives treatment of disease  read our e-book FDA finds traces of melamine in US infant formula -II

 

Thats different from the impression of zero tolerance the agency left on Oct. 3, when it stated: "FDA is currently unable to establish any level of melamine and melamine-related compounds in infant formula that does not raise public health concerns."

FDA scientists said then that they couldnt set anacceptable level of melamine exposure in infant formula because science hadnt had enough time to understand the chemicals effects on infants underdeveloped kidneys. Plus, there is the complicating factor that infant formula often constitutes a newborns entire diet.

The agency added, however, that its position did not mean that any exposure to a detectable level of melamine and melamine-related compounds in infant formula would result in harm to infants.

Still, the announcement was widely interpreted by manufacturers, the news media and Congress to mean that infant formula that tested positive at any level could not be sold in the United States.

The Grocery Manufacturers Association, for example, told its members: "FDA could not identify a safe level for melamine and related compounds in infant formula; thus it can be concluded they will not accept any detectable melamine in infant formula."

It was not until the AP inquired about tests on domestic formula that the FDA articulated that while it couldnt set a safe exposure for infants, it would accept some melamine in formula raising the question of whether the decision to accept very low concentrations was made only after traces were detected.

On Sunday, Sundlof said the agency had never said, nor implied, that domestic infant formula was going to be entirely free of melamine. He said he didnt know if the agencys statements on infant formula had been misinterpreted.

In China, melamine was intentionally dumped into watered-down milk to trick food quality tests into showing higher protein levels than actually existed. Byproducts of the milk ended up in infant formula, coffee creamers, even biscuits.

The concentrations of melamine there were extraordinarily high, as much as 2,500 parts per million. The concentrations detected in the FDA samples were 10,000 times smaller the equivalent of a drop in a 64-gallon trash bin.

There would be no economic advantage to spiking U.S.-made formula at the extremely low levels found in the FDA testing. It neither raises the protein count nor saves valuable protein, said University of California, Davis chemist Michael Filigenzi, a melamine detection expert.

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