India moves to establish melamine limits for infant formula

By Mark ASTLEY contact

- Last updated on GMT

India moves to establish melamine limits for infant formula

Related tags: Milk, India

India has moved to establish a maximum limit for melamine in liquid and powdered infant formula. 

In a notification posted in the Indian Gazette on June 5, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) proposed a maximum level of 1 milligram (mg) of melamine per kilogram (kg) of powdered infant formula.

A maximum level of 0.15mg per litre of liquid infant formula was also proposed.

It has called for public comment on the proposed first time maximum levels for melamine in infant formula. 

The window for comment closes on September 6.

If passed, the melamine infant formula limits will be written into existing Indian Food Safety and Standards (Contaminants, Toxins and Residues) Regulations.

Nitrogen-rich melamine is a organic chemical widely used in the manufacture of plastics, adhesives, dishware and whiteboards. 

On a number of occasions in recent years, however, it has made its way into milk. 

Farmers in some countries, including India and China, have been accused of adding melamine to the milk they produce in a bid to increase its apparent protein content. 

While not toxic to adults, melamine can cause kidney stones and kidney damage in infants. 

In China in 2008, six infants died and 300,000 were sickened after consuming infant formula tainted with melamine.

Related topics: Policy, Food safety, South Asia, Dairy

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1 comment

FSSAI should not allow any amount of melamine present in infant formula at all

Posted by Woan Pyng Ng,

Why should there be a "maximum limit of melamine" permitted in formula milk when melamine is a foreign substance that should not have exists in milk? It just opens a window of opportunity for the farmers and infant milk manufacturers to use this substance to lower their cost or so-called " increase its apparent protein content". I think the India's FSSAI should be stricter and not allow any amount of melamine present in infant formula instead since it is our baby's health & life that is at stake.

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