All Milk-Based and Soy-Based Product Samples Tested for Melamine Safe for Human Consumption

April 18, 2013, Ottawa: A study released today by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has found that 100 percent of milk-based and soy-based product samples tested for melamine were safe for consumption.

The CFIA tested 590 (302 milk-based and 288 soy-based) imported and domestic samples collected in 11 Canadian cities in 2010-2011. One hundred percent of the results in this targeted survey were well below Health Canada's melamine interim standard of 2.5 parts per million (ppm) for foods containing milk or milk-derived ingredients. None of the infant formula/cereal samples tested positive for melamine. There were no recalls.

In addition to infant formula/cereals (powders), the tested milk-based samples included refrigerated beverages, candies, cheeses, condensed milks, creams (refrigerated ready-to-serve), milk (two percent, evaporated), instant drink mixes, yoghurt, and sauces. Tested soy-based products included refrigerated and non-refrigerated soy drinks/beverages, cheeses, creams, soy milk, soy sauces, tofu, food products containing soybean meal, yoghurt and snacks.

Melamine is a synthetic chemical used in commercial and industrial applications. It does not occur naturally in the environment or in food, and it is not permitted for use in food. However, it may be found in food at low levels that are not of concern to human health as a result of its industrial uses, such as from fertilizers or as a by-product from the use of certain pesticides.

The CFIA routinely tests various food products for specific hazards to determine whether they pose a potential health risk to consumers. If a human health risk is found, a public recall notice is issued immediately.

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