Dairy contaminants

Fonterra DCD crisis: No positive tests since November

By RJ Whitehead

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Dairy products Powdered milk Milk

Fonterra DCD crisis: No positive tests since November
The Ministry for Primary Industries has released the findings from extensive testing of New Zealand dairy products for dicyandiamide (DCD).

We are releasing the core findings of the testing today to be as open as we can be with our markets and customers, despite the fact that the quantities of DCD found in our dairy products creates absolutely no food safety risk whatsoever​,” McNee said.

Testing specifically targeted dairy products using milk collected during the New Zealand spring last year from the less than 5% of dairy farmers who used DCD on pastures. Results have been coming in as recently as last week.

As expected, minute traces of DCD have been found in various dairy products already in the supply chain from a variety of companies. However, the MPI insists there is no food safety risk, and all traces have been significantly below the European Commission’s daily intake level for DCD.

Importantly, tests on products made from milk collected from farms after mid-November show no traces of DCD at all​,” added McNee. “These findings confirm our expectations. We have informed markets of them​.”

Trace amounts

Nearly 2,000 samples of dairy products were tested from all the major dairy companies since June 2012. Sampling was targeted to areas where DCD was applied to the land, with the focus being products manufactured during, and shortly following, the DCD application period up to the end September.

In total, 371 detections of DCD were recorded, with the last dairy product manufactured directly from DCD-tainted milk found on November 12.​ Of the 602 samples analysed since then, no DCD has been detected.

The highest detection recorded was 2.4 parts per million, which applied to a sample of skim milk powder manufactured on August 9. This was one of nine samples to exceed 1 part per million, although these products were all concentrated. 

When considered on a liquid milk basis, all results were well below 1 part per million, the MPI insisted.

Related topics Policy Oceania Food safety Dairy

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