EU Measures Pay Off as Melamine Detected in Chinese-Imported Organic Soya


Source: Feedinfo News Service

(dated 28/11/2008)


28 November 2008 - French agricultural co-operative Terrena has received laboratory test results indicating that some organic soya imported from China in June and July were found to contain melamine traces.


The news comes shortly after European Commission and DGAL recommendations for importers of Chinese animal feed and feed additives to strengthen their controls for possible melamine residues.

Three batches arrived in the port of Le Havre on 4 and 27 June as well as 24 July 2008. Terrena then proceeded to sending samples to the Laréal laboratory in the Morbihan department in October. Results showed that one batch had melamine levels of 116 mg/kg, 46 times more than the maximum permitted limit of 2.5 mg/kg.  

As a result of these laboratory findings, Terrena proceeded to a recall of the product earlier this month, which had been delivered to its subsidiary Bio Nutrition Animale based in Mervent (Vendée department).

It is understood that the 905 tons of organic soya in Mervent were quarantined. An additional 300 tons of feed made from the soya were sold to 127 poultry farms in the neighbouring areas. However, the remaining amount that was not fed to the chickens was also blocked.

The non-compliant soya will soon be destroyed. Furthermore, the melamine found in the feed consumed by the chickens is excreted within 24 hours after digestion and therefore no traces of the chemical can be found in the meat, said a Terrena spokesperson.

The French Food Safety Authority (AFSSA) beleives that the human health risk can be considered as zero, and, as of today, no retailers have removed poultry products from their shelves originating from these farms.

According to the Terrena spokesperson, the co-operative is considering legal action against its Chinese supplier.

Terrena is France’s largest agricultural co-operative with over 10,000 employees. The co-op posted a 3.3 billion euro turnover in 2007.





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