Excessive Mercury Prompts Recall of Infant Formula in China

Posted on June 15, 2012

A recall taking place in another country has shaken confidence in an already struggling industry.

The recall was announced by the Inner Mongolia Yili Industrial Group Company, and it concerns Quan You baby formula produced by the company.  This baby formula may have been compromised with high levels of mercury that could pose a danger to any infant that consumes the product.  The United States Center for Disease Control has stated that heightened levels of mercury have been known to lead to kidney and brain damage.

This formula was available across China, and the recall could not apparently have come at a worse time for the country.  Not only is China commemorating Food Safety Week, but consumer confidence in milk was already low because of scandals that erupted years ago.  In fact, many believe that compromised milk powder directly led to the death of six children four years prior.

The formula that could have the high levels of mercury was created between November of last year and May of this year.  The country’s General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine discovered the problem during testing.  Currently, people are trying to figure out why the contamination happened in the first place.  Some suspect whey powder imported from abroad was to blame, while others point to power plant pollution breathed in by cows who then provide the dairy ingredients.

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