Home > Chinese infant milk crackdown hurts Australian exports

Chinese infant milk crackdown hurts Australian exports

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Infant milk formula exports to China have plummeted due to new registration requirements.

The ABC reports that imported brands of infant formula in the country have slumped from 1,000 to under 100.

The crackdown on fake brands has led to much tougher registration requirements, and of 19 infant milk formula brands from Australia, only two have been approved by the Chinese Certification and Accreditation Administration.

Exports were previously growing strongly, and were worth $76 million last year, up from $56 million in 2011.

As the Wall Street Journal explains, the crackdown caps a “six-year campaign to rebuild China's dairy industry after a scandal over melamine-tainted baby milk in 2008 put local brands under a cloud.” The melamine scandal saw the deaths of a reported six infants.

The process to meet the new standards was described as “extremely intense” by Australian Dairy Park, one of only two Australian producers that have gained accreditation.

“It was a very thorough audit, from traceability all the way through the system,” the company’s general manager, Ken Thomas, told the ABC.

“The actual audit itself was a fairly intense one-day audit. It was really three months of solid work before the audit.

“So the period between the start of this year and March was primarily not spent on manufacture but on preparing ourselves for registration.”

Image: AFP/Getty Images

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